AS an answer to youth unemployment in the country, the Federal Government has set up a programme tagged N-Power Volunteer Corps.
MILLIONS of Nigerians have registered for the programme since its inception last year, with the second edition for 2017 already ongoing.
THOSE who applied and are deemed qualified would go for specific tests for eventual employment through the scheme.
THE programme is targeted at unemployed graduates or non-graduates in the age range of 18 to 35 years across the 774 local governments in the nation.
THOUGH this effort may be like a drop in ocean, it is better that the Federal Government is seen to be directly doing something to curtail the increase in the unemployment rate in the country, rather than fold its arms.
THE latest data from the National Bureau of Statistics revealed that the unemployment rate in Nigeria is rising and stands at 14.2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2016.
EVEN beyond that stark data are the daily negative life experiences of many people.
THIS is a serious cause for concern and can be a hot bed for unrest, especially with no social safety net to ensure people’s survival.
ONE can only imagine the frustration of someone who is unemployed and faced with the threat of imminent hunger.
EXPLAINING the advantages of the N-Power programme, the Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, recently said: “More motivating for me is to hear the personal testimonies of our young participants in N-Power. I’ve heard about restored dignity, just as families have been lifted by the contribution our young citizens are now able to make.
“EVERY local government in Nigeria has felt the impact of N-Power. In partnership with State Governments, these 200,000 young Nigerians (recruited in 2016) were deployed to public primary schools, primary healthcare centres and in Agriculture development project centres in all the Local Government Areas in Nigeria.”
THIS year’s target is to add 300,000 to the 200,000 recruited, bringing the total number to 500,000.
A novel approach to the programme, the provision of N-Power devices, was unveiled this month.
AND according to Prof. Osinbajo, it would serve as the technological medium to train the hundreds of thousands of young Nigerians on the program.
“WITH the devices, we are able to provide training on three fronts. First, build capacity to undertake primary assignments, secondly, build capacity to make young people employable and thirdly, build capacity around exit skills to prepare them for more economic endeavours,” the Acting President said.
THE Federal Government with this initiative is highlighting the importance of capacity training to increase the employability of the citizens.
IT is a tacit acknowledgment that the curricula being used in the high institutions in the nation need urgent improvement.
AND if the specialised digitally deployed training for the N-Power Corps can be scaled higher to also benefit the teeming youths in our higher institutions, it will be a great development.
THE HOPE commends the Federal Government for this initiative and urges that all the factors leading to the high rate of unemployment should be addressed.