By Obinna Amaobi
No fewer than 11,000 young Nigerians have graduated from the National Industrial Skills Development Programme (NISDP), put in place by the Industrial Training Fund (ITF) to equip individuals with relevant skills.
This year’s beneficiaries of the empowerment programme, brings the total number of Nigerians that have so far benefitted from the scheme to over 200,000.
Speaking at the graduation ceremony of the NISDP in Abuja on Monday, Director General of ITF, Sir Joseph Ari, said the scheme is one of the numerous skills acquisition intervention programmes introduced by the Fund to facilitate the Federal Government’s policy on job and wealth creation.
“It focuses on skills acquisition intervention to create jobs to stem rampant unemployment and breed a new generation of entrepreneurs, in order to transform the economic landscape of the country.
“Since its inception, NISDP has equipped over 200,000 Nigerians nationwide and 18,000 from the FCT with skills for employability and entrepreneurship,” Ari said.
While saying 300 persons from the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) benefited from this year’s NISDP programme, the ITF boss said skills on nine trade areas were learnt during the training that commenced in the last quarter of 2019.
His words: “11,000 Nigerians were equipped with skills in nine trades, namely; leader works, welding and fabrication, catering and event management, tiling, production and laying of interlock tiles, furniture making, domestic wiring and electrical installation , solar energy installation, plumbing and pipefitting and ‘autogelle’ and beauty care”.
Ari commended President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration for its efforts in creating jobs in the country and called on other stakeholders to collaborate with ITF to train more Nigerians on various employability skills.
Also speaking at the event, Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, commended ITF for equipping beneficiaries with relevant skills.
Represented by the Permanent Secretary, Political and Economic Affairs Office, Mr David Adejor, the SGF said :“As we all know, to effectively tackle poverty and unemployment, we need people to be equipped with requisite skills for increased production.
“Of course, a direct effect of skilled population, especially among the youths would translate to drastic reduction in social vices such as drug abuse, kidnapping, banditry, among others.”
Highpoint of the event, which witnessed the present of representatives of both Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Richard Adebayo and Minister of State, Mariam Katagum, Chairman of Senate Committee on Industry, Senator Sakiru Oshinowo, among other dignitaries, was the presentation of start-up kits to the NISDP graduates.