The Federal Government has reiterated its commitment to mobilising the full energies and capacities of the youth in the country towards minimising the risks to national security posed by rising youth unemployment and underemployment, in line with global realities.
The Honourable Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Mr. Sunday Akin Dare disclosed this today in Abuja at the occasion of the launching of the Nigerian Youth Employment Action Plan (NIYEAP 2021-2024).
According to him, the launching of the Nigerian Youth Employment Action Plan today, is an expression of the commitment of the President Muhammadu Buhari Administration to continue to facilitate an enabling environment that will create about 3.7 million jobs annually so as to achieve national development goals, particularly, sustainable economic growth in the country.
Youth he said, must and should be regarded as a viable investment that can yield positive benefits for all spheres of our socio-economic progress, rather than a group targeted for periodic empowerment interventions.
The Minister stated that youth unemployment has really assumed an uncomfortable proportion and that its effect has not only led to frustration on the part of the youth, but also, is the underlying cause of poverty and youth restiveness in the country.
“It is important to state that the economic and social consequences of youth unemployment transcend the youth group. It has also resulted in missed economic opportunities for the nation. This is because youth inclusion is about skilled human capital, social and economic stability, a vibrant and healthy labour force, which will also engender political stability and national growth and development”, Mr. Dare said.
It is in realization of the importance of providing opportunities for sustainable economic engagement of youth, he emphasized, that the Nigerian Youth Employment Action Plan is now being presented to stakeholders as a framework which will address fragmentation, promote synergy, mobilize resources, and deliver a comprehensive approach to youth employment interventions, through multi sector collaboration.
The Minister explained that since his assumption of office, the Ministry has concentrated efforts on moving youth development interventions from the empowerment model to a sustainable system that emphasizes investment in youth.
Stating further that this Plan emphasizes the 4Es: Employability, Entrepreneurship Development, Employment Creation and Equality and rights, adding that it also details needed actions in support of employment creation for youth in critical economic and social sectors and outlines the financing, implementation, monitoring and evaluation frameworks.
“The priority themes of the plan, known as the 4Es are, “further delineated into strategic lines of action under each theme, with emphasis on sectors that have high job creation potential, such as Digital Economy, Rural Economy, Green Economy and Renewable energy sector, Manufacturing, Tourism, Construction and Services.
The Plan will also ensure the inclusion of partners across sectors and will create a robust partnership base through which my Ministry will ensure wider reach of youth employment programmes across the country”.
To ensure inclusion from the grassroots he said, the Ministry will also be convening zonal inception workshops on the Nigerian Youth Employment Action Plan, through which stakeholders from the 36 States and the Federal Capital Territory will be included in the implementation of the plan.
He therefore urged all stakeholders from the public, private sectors and development partners to take a risk and invest in youth for the purpose of economic growth and development, stressing, “I assure you that it will be worth it, with benefits for the development of our nation and the global community”.
Speaking earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development, Mr. Nebeolisa Anako, stated that the idea of the action plan is to provide kinetic solutions to the challenges of youth unemployment and restiveness through cross-sectoral collaboration.
He solicited the cooperation of stakeholders towards the full implementation of the action with a view to enriching the Ministry’s objective which is to achieve the goal of the initiative.
In a goodwill message, the UNIDO Representative to ECOWAS and Regional Director, Mr. Jean Bakole, said, “the launch of the Nigerian Youth Employment Action Plan is apt and came at a time when the world is facing a worsening youth unemployment crisis; due to the global COVID-19 pandemic that severely affected labour markets around the world”.
He commended the present administration and all stakeholders for collaborating to develop the Youth Employment Action Plan which also aligns with the SDG goals.
Avoid Induced Rejection, Unauthorized Journeys, DG Admonishes Corps Members
As 2021 Batch ‘B’ Stream Two Corps Members will be leaving the 3-week orientation camp on Tuesday the Corps Members have been advised to avoid induced rejection, rather accept their posting in good faith and settle down to contribute their quota to the development of their host communities.
NYSC Director-General, Brigadier General Shuaibu lbrahim stated this on Monday while de-briefing the 2021 Batch ‘B’ Stream Two Corps Members and Camp Officials through a nationwide virtual address.
He said any Corps Member caught inducing posting or redeployment would be sanctioned in line with NYSC bye-laws.
He also disclosed that there is nothing like two weeks break after leaving the Orientation Camp, but added that if there is a compelling need for any Corps Member to travel, the concerned must obtain permission from the NYSC through the established channel.
Ibrahim said no Corps employer is authorized to grant permission to any Corps Member to travel.
“Once you get to your place of primary assignment tomorrow, don’t put pressure on your employers for rejection.
“Don’t lobby anyone that you want to change your posting or relocation. If they write to us that you induced or forced them to reject you, you will be punished.”
As patriotic Corps Members, it is expected that you accept posting to anywhere you have been posted to and add value to the community”, the DG added.
He urged them to be patriotic in the service to their fatherland and ensure they equally add value to themselves, NYSC Scheme and the society at large.
The Director-General admonished them to use the opportunity of NYSC platform to excel in life.
“You have gone through the rudiments of the Orientation Course, please take advantage of it and see what you can do for your fatherland.
“Let the spirit of the Orientation Exercise live in you forever as Nigerians. National integration should be your watchword. We should be united as a country”, the DG added.
General lbrahim warned against the negative use of the social media, urging them to verify every information before it is shared online.
“Don’t use fake news to promote disunity, shun cybercrimes and all forms of criminality. In whatever action that you are going to take, please look back at where you are coming from and avoid any action that will haunt you tomorrow.
“Shun drugs, be good citizens and good ambassadors of your, institutions, families and the NYSC Scheme”, he said.
The Director-General implored the Corps Members to continue with the Post-Camp training in Skills Acquisition and Entrepreneurship Developnent Programme.
He revealed that the Scheme had partnered some financial institutions like the Central Bank of Nigeria, Access Bank, Bank of Industry, Unity Bank, NYSC Foundation, Leventis Foundation, among others, that are ready to support Corps Members with loans and trainings.
The Director-General stated that efforts are in top gear towards the establishment of National Youth Service Corps Trust Fund, which would make start-up capitals available to interested Corps Members to start-up their businesses as they exit Service.
Ibrahim also enjoined the Corps Members to be security conscious at all times and avoid any action that may endanger their safety.
He warned them against boarding vehicles from unauthorized motorparks, enjoining them to use approved motorparks.
“You must be security conscious and don’t endanger your safety. Under no condition should you travel at night, or board vehicle along the road. Your welfare is very paramount to NYSC
If you are going to travel, you must be permitted. Write through employer to your Local Government Inspector and it will get to the State Coordinator for approval. If you are going to travel, ensure that you are permitted”, the DG said.
He said the Scheme is making efforts to get rebate on flight charges for Corps Members that may want to travel by flight.
Ibrahim informed the Corps Members that efforts are on-going as directed by President Muhammadu Buhari to enlist Corps Members in the National Health Insurance Scheme for effective Medicare during the service year.
He advised the Corps Members to get COVID-19 vaccine in order to protect themselves and also protect others from the deadly virus.
In his vote of thanks on behalf of his colleagues nationwide, the Imo State Corps Camp Director, Otobo Joshua Osa IM/21B/1740 lauded the Director-General for his doggedness and passion for the welfare and security of Corps Members.
“We remain eternally grateful and we assure you of our commitment to the ideals of the NYSC, having imbibed all the lessons taught us in the course of the Orientation Programme”, he concluded.
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