By Appolos Christian
The Extended Special Public Works (ESPW) that employed 774,000 persons across the country (1000 each LGA) initiated to be a one off policy, has been restructured to be a yearly job creation programme under the pilot-ship of the National Directorate of Employment (NDE).
ESPW; a fresh idea of the Federal government aimed at giving jobs for mostly unskilled Nigerians as a yearly job provision programme, literarily mean that 1000 persons from each LGA in Nigeria will be engaged, paid for three months and equipped with self employment skill through NDE’ Basic Business Training (BBT) as exit settlement by the government.
According to the Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo SAN, who revealed this on Tuesday 17 August, 2021, at the opening session of the ongoing three days training for Zonal Directors and State Coordinators of the NDE, the extension of the job provision programme will commence as soon as plans are concluded and President Muhammandu Buhari who was the initiator, approves it.
Speaking to journalists at the event, the Minister explained the meeting was meant to discuss critical issues surrounding the ESPW just concluded first phase, and to identify problems encountered in the programme’s execution and most importantly provide solutions as well as interject fresh ideas to make future implementation of the programme hitch free and sustainable.
Keyamo admitted that the road has been rough, but the administration is determined to ensure that the benefits of the programme reach the target groups.
He also said there are still a few difficult corners to navigate as government strives to complete the payment process for beneficiaries of the 774,000 jobs who are yet to receive their stipends.
“We still have a few difficult corners to navigate as we complete the payment process for those who are yet to receive their stipends.
“This meeting and training will enable you design the template for the completion report on the programme, x-ray the challenges encountered during the implementation and recommendations for improvements moving forward. This development could not have come at a better time than now when the President Muhammadu Buhari led administration is planning to extend the programme next year and beyond.” His words.
Furthermore, Keyamo noted that “another component of this training programme will incorporate the Anti-Corruption and Transparency Sensitization for Zonal Directors and State Coordinators. This is also a step in the right direction as the President Muhammadu Buhari led government at the center is working assiduously towards eliminating corruption and corrupt conducts with the sphere of governance.”
Earlier in his opening remarks, the Director-General of NDE, Mallam Abubakar Nuhu Fikpo, that the exit strategy for ESPW participants has been implemented by the Directorate through the Basic Business Training (BBT) initiative.
He went on to charge the training participants to nonetheless, “identify other exist strategies that will further make the gains of the programme more sustainable.
“Let me at this pint remind us that our mission here is to fashion a new and effective NDE. Therefore I wish to charge you all to apply yourselves to the tasks we have to accomplish here.”