Mr Fatai Nojeem, one of the facilitators of the Skill Acquisition and Entrepreneurship Development (SAED) programme in Ibadan, says some National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) are not having the right attitude to the programme.
Nojeem, while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Ibadan, on Saturday, said some of the corps members considered the programme as a waste of time.
NAN reports that SAED, a Federal Government initiative to reduce the rate of unemployment, is usually first introduced to corps members at their orientation camps; followed with an advice to pursue it after camp.
Nojeem, a tailoring and customising facilitator of the programme, said corps members should not be thinking of what to do after the service year, had they taken the programme seriously while in service.
According to him, SAED is a well crafted programme to empower the youths to be self-employed, but it is sadly toyed with.
“It is sad that when they are through with their service year, they now begin to think of what next to do, when, in fact, they should have known it while still in service.
“This is one the things SAED is meant to guard against, as it prepares them for the realities of life after their national service year,” he said.
Nojeem, therefore, advised corps members yet to engage in any of the windows of SAED to reconsider their stance, so as not to miss a lifetime opportunity.
He, however, said he had trained more than 500 corps members who now have something to settle down with, instead of waiting endlessly for jobs.
“This programme provides a lot of benefits to both the students and facilitators in so many ways, though not without challenges,” he said.
Meanwhile, a corps member, Bashir Tajudeen, told NAN that SAED had changed him positively by changing his orientation to life.
“The programme has given me the opportunity to meet a lot of people; the orientation to address the public, in addition to teaching me customer-service relationship.
“I have it in mind to work with it instead of waiting for a job.
“It should not be seen as a waste of time because the Nigeria of today does not focus on certificates,” he said.
Miss Balqis Omotosho, also a participant, said the programme had provided her with multiple streams of income, giving her rest of mind.
“It provides the assurance of something to fall back on in case of unforeseen circumstances, because it can be started with little money, as long as a client is available,” she said.
Another participant, Joshua Ogunyibo, said that SAED, with its tons of benefits, was more of a priority to him than his Place of Primary Assignment (PPA).
“It is a programme to pursue while in service and out of service,” he said.
While Muburak Raji appreciated the programme for setting him up as an entrepreneur, Teniola Olaseinde said she was grateful seeing herself becoming more skillful.