By Christian Ogbonna
Abakaliki, Sept. 29, 2020 More than 650 unemployed youths, drawn from the 13 local government areas of Ebonyi, have been trained on different skills by the National Directorate of Employment (NDE) vocational skills, tagged “Basic National Open Apprenticeship Scheme (B-NOAS).
The Director-General of NDE, Dr Mohammed Argungu, said on Tuesday at the flag-off/erientation ceremony of the 2020 beneficiaries in Abakaliki, that the scheme focused on 15 vocational skills.
He listed the skills to include electrical installation, vulcanising and generator maintenance, fashion designing, mobile phone repair, computer operation, hair dressing, barbing and catering, among others.
Argungu, represented by the Coordinator of NDE in the state, Mr Marcel Igboanude, said that the skills training programme was the innovative and dynamic strategies, deployed by the directorate to address the challenges posed by mass unemployment in the country.
He said that the training, through B-NOAS, had become imperative because unemployment had remained one of the very serious social challenges militating against the nation’s move to create jobs and ensure national development.
He said: “B-NOAS is a vocational skills training scheme used by NDE to impart modern vocational skills on unemployed youths and women in our society in order to make them employable and self-reliant.
“Today, 650 unemployed youths and women will be receiving necessary orientation on vocational training in 15 trendy skills.
“The scheme has three months duration, using NDE skill acquisition centres and informal master-craftsmen and women in Ebonyi.”.
Mr Steve Egbo, Executive Director, Administration and Training, Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), urged the beneficiaries to be focused and support the Federal Government schemes so as to address the challenges of unemployment.
Egbo, represented by his wife, Mrs Princess Egbo, said that the importance of vocational skills to economic development could be over-emphasised.
“This is part of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration’s efforts towards job creation.
I believe the Federal Government is keeping to its promises on youth empowerment in the country,” he stated.
Mr Ken Agunwa, Head of the Department, Rural Employment Promotion, Ebonyi NDE, expressed the state government’s commitment to youth empowerment, urging the unemployed youths to embrace the schemes.
Sunday Omaka, one of the beneficiaries of the training, expressed happiness over the scheme and pledged to utilise the skills acquired during the training.
“I thank the Federal Government for this golden opportunity, because this is what many unemployed youths have been yearning for.
“I registered to become a computer operator and I will like to be an ambassador of NDE after the three months training,” Omaka said.