A total of 157 youths from the Niger Delta have completed a two weeks intensive training at Nigeria’s premier Technical University, First Technical University (Tech-U), Ibadan. The Youth Empowerment Programme is a product of a partnership between the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs and the university. Speaking at the closing ceremony which held at Tech-U, the Minister of the Niger Delta, Pastor Usani Usani, who was represented at the event by Mr. Ibrahim Akanya, Director, Economic Empowerment Directorate of the Ministry, noted that the empowerment programme was necessitated by the need to develop the manpower capacity of the Niger Delta region. According to him, “development is not about physical infrastructure alone, but also about developing the requisite manpower that can propel the development of the region.
We are interested in developing both physical infrastructure and human capital to be able to enhance significantly the quality of living in the Niger Delta region”. While commending Tech-U for the quality of training given to the beneficiaries, some of whom were recent returnees from Libya, Mr. Akanya charged the participants to put to good use the skills they acquired at the university. The TVET beneficiaries were trained in agro-allied ventures such as fisheries and poultry in addition to a host of innovative skills required for successful business operations. Akanya also admonished the participants to judiciously deploy the take-off grant given to them to kick-start a truly rewarding entrepreneurial life.
Tech-U Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Ayobami Salami appreciated the Ministry for finding Tech-U as a worthy partner in its commitment to empowering Nigerian youths. He noted that the Youth Empowerment Programme was one of the flagship interventions of the University conceived to fight frontally the rising scourge of unemployment in the country.
“As implemented by the university’s Centre for Technical, Vocational Entrepreneurship Training (TVET), it is devoted to equipping individuals with skills acquisition and entrepreneurship training in carefully-selected areas of needs in the larger society. Aside commitment to bridging the yawning skills gap, the programme is focused on generating self-employment among the teeming youths of the country”, he said.
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