The Director-General of the Industrial Training Fund (ITF), Sir Joseph Ari, says the fund has trained 200,000 youths on various skills nationwide, since the inception of its National Industrial Skills Development Programme (NISDP) in 2016.
Ari disclosed this on Monday in Jos during the graduation ceremony of the 2019 NISDP trainees.
According to him, the NISDP is a skill acquisition intervention programme which focuses on skills acquisition to create jobs, stems the tide of unemployment and breeding a generation of entrepreneurs.
He said that the programme was also introduced and implemented to facilitate the achievement of the Federal Government’s policy on job and wealth creation.
The director-general also disclosed that the 350 trainees commenced training in the last quarter of 2019 and that the occasion marked the graduation of the 1st batch of 221 youths who were trained in catering, solar energy installation, catering and events management and in `autogele’ and beauty care and who also be given free start-up packs.
He revealed that the training constituted 80 per cent practical and 20 per cent theory.
He urged the graduates to make the best use of their start-up packs, as the training and the acquired start-up packs would make them become self-reliant and also employers of labour who would, in turn, contribute their quota to the economy of the nation.
Ari said that skills acquisition remained one of the most viable and sustainable solutions to the rising unemployment and poverty that had continued to defy the best efforts of governmental and non-governmental approaches.
Ari appealed to state governments, the organised private sector, non-governmental organisations, politicians and other stakeholders to collaborate with the ITF in their efforts of training Nigerians.
Gov. Simon Lalong, who was represented by his Deputy, Prof. Sonni Tyoden, commended the ITF for its NISDP programme, pointing that the programme had helped in making some youths self-reliant and employers of labour.
Lalong said that the most effective solution in tackling poverty was via skills acquisition and that for Nigeria to become an industrialised nation, it needed youths who were very skilled.
He reassured the director-general of the state government’s unflinching support and partnership with the Fund.
He called on the graduates to make the best use of their start-up packs.
Mrk Steven Samuel, one of the beneficiaries of the training, thanked the ITF for the training, saying that the programme had made him self-reliant and would also make him an employer of labour.
Samuel reassured the management of the ITF that the trainees would make the best use of the start-up packs.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that 15,000 youths from Plateau have benefited from the NISDP training.