By Daniel Tyokua
The Industrial Training Fund (ITF) has rolled out a new scheme to train 13,000 jobless Nigerians. The participants would be selected from the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) irrespective of their political inclinations.
The Director-General and Chief Executive Officer of ITF, Sir Joseph N. Ari, said that the programme which will spanned five months was aimed at stemming the spiralling unemployment and drive the present administration’s job creation efforts.
Ari told journalists at a world press conference in Abuja on Tuesday that of the 13,000 youths, 11,100 of them are to be trained under National Industrial Skills Development Programme (NISDP), 360 women under the Women Skills Empowerment Programme, 75 in Air-conditioning and Refrigerator, 50 in designing and garment making (training on wheels).
According to him, 120 are to be trained under the Skills Training and Empowerment Programme for the physically challenged, STEPP-C, 150 persons under the post-harvest techniques and project development programme.
Others, he said would be 150 persons in aqua culture/fish farming, 150 for manure production, 150 for crop production and another 150 in poultry.
The DG said ITF management came up with the list of the implementable programmes for 2018 to help train interested Nigerians in various areas that will make them dependent.
Ari revealed the implementable programmes for the year to include National Industrial Skills Development Programme, Women Skills Empowerment Programme, Air-Conditioning and Refrigerator (Training on Wheels), designing and garment making for Nigerian youths.
Others, he said, are skills training and empowerment programme for the physically challenged (STEPP-C), post-harvest technique and project development, aquaculture/fish farming, manure production, crop production/greenhouse technology, poultry farming and training programme development on international marketing.
Ari stated that with the number of Nigerians that are currently unemployed, the number of trainees that would be starting with, which was over 13,000 appeared to be a drop of water in the ocean.
On the selection process, he said that it will be done in consonance with the state governments based on the need, saying the ITF does not select those to be trained without liaising with the appropriate authorities.
The DG said that tackling unemployment through skills acquisition cannot and should not be the responsibility of the ITF and other agencies of the Federal Government alone.
He also advocated for the continuous sensitisation of Nigerians on the importance of the acquisition of technical skills, urging the government at all levels to appreciate the critical place of skills acquisition in not just tackling unemployment but also developing their societies as a whole.
The DG, therefore, solicited for the support and collaboration of all state governments, the organised private sector, politicians and other stakeholders to assist in multiplying the efforts.