THE Industrial Training Fund (ITF) on Tuesday said it has commenced the training of 9,500 youths in 18 states of the federation, including the Federal Capital territory (FCT), in various trade areas.
Acting Director-General of ITF, Mr Dickson Chinedum Onuoha, who disclosed this in Calabar, during the flag-off of the 5th phase of the National Industrial Skills Development Programme (NISDP), said the training is in tandem with the Federal Government’s commitment to bridge the unemployment gap through entrepreneurial development.
He said that the programme is designed to equip young Nigerians with requisite skills for employment and job creation, stressing that in this phase of the programme, which would last for a duration of three months, satellite centres have been selected in the three senatorial districts of Cross River to provide training in Aluminum fabrication, tailoring /fashion design and catering/ event management.
Onuoha said these trade areas were carefully selected based on their anticipated value addition to the citizens of the state and the potential to provide sustainable means of livelihood.
According to him, “As an organisation, we affirm our commitment to conduct the training programme with the highest sense of responsibility and in accordance with technical and vocational training delivery standards.
“This is also part of the Federal Government’s efforts to add value to skills acquisition. It is also a strategy to ensure collaboration and synergy among relevant agencies.”
The DG said at the end of the three months training, the Bank of Industry would provide the trainees with soft loans to enable them start up their own businesses.
He however urged the trainees to shun all negative acts capable of undermining the noble objectives of the programme.
On his part, Calabar area manager of ITF, Mr Idongesit Akpan, said already, 500 trainees in 18 satellite centres across the state have produced products from their preferred trade, which would be displayed during the exhibition stage very soon.
Also speaking, paramount ruler of Calabar municipality and Ndidem of the Quas, His Majesty Patrick Oqua Agbor said the training would contribute in no small measure in the reduction of youth restiveness in the country.
He however urged the youths to make good of the opportunity to acquire basic skills that will impact positively on their lives and in turn make them employers of labour.
“The training will help to tackle the worrisome issue of unemployment and youths restiveness in the country. It would also help them to be self-reliant and not depend on white collar jobs,” the monarch added.