Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, has revealed that plans and programmes are at advanced stage for the Federal Government to train no fewer than 500,000 Nigerian youths on digital skills.
He also expressed happiness that Nigerian youths are on their way to becoming part of the digital wealth economy of the 21st century.
Addressing 2,000 participants of N-Power Software at the Public Service Institute of Nigeria in Abuja, he assured that the ministry would build on the capacity of programmes already earmarked for the youths and scale up the number of more beneficiaries in pursuit of government’s objective of employment and wealth creation.
The minister also promised that opportunities that will be created from such expanded programmes will be accessible to all interested youths.
“One of the plans we have is Digital Youth Nigeria (DYNG). It is a plan to train our youths and make them employable. The ministry will partner this programme (N-Power Software) to ensure that we ratchet up this programme so that in the coming years, we can reach more of you in thousands.
“We would build on the capacity of the programmes already earmarked for the youths. We will not reinvent the wheel. The ministry will be able to bring several of your colleagues to benefit. We have youth centres spread across the country that we will use to achieve this.
“It will be a transparent system because there will be a digital footprint. Wherever you are in this country, you have the opportunity to access whatever programme for the youths in this country.
“Let me also intimate you of the ministry’s plans to help 500,000 young people acquire digital skills in two years. It will create an avenue for them to get access to information for opportunities through an online platform, among others,” he promised.
The Minister equally expressed delight at N-Power Software organised by the Presidency, stressing that the youths were on the verge of becoming part of the digital wealth economy of the 21st century.
He added that part of the mandates handed down to the ministry is to create opportunities for young people to plug into the opportunities of the 21st century.
“You should count themselves lucky and equally work hard to achieve the set objectives of the programme. The digital skill gap in Nigeria provides an added advantage for you to secure jobs after the training.
“I am excited at what I have seen today. It forms part of the larger vision. The President said we should do everything to keep the youth busy, especially, the commitment to providing them with digital skills.
“What is happening here today, 2000 youths from across the North trained for three months and equipped with digital skills to self-start themselves, will be replicated across the states with federal government as the driver, providing encouragement for the state governments,” he assured.
While highlighting the benefits of the programme, the Minister said: “It has first succeeded in taking the 2000 number of young people away from social vices like drug abuse, kidnapping and the likes, among other benefits.”
He further promised that the Ministry will support the programme to ensure that more youths have access to the digital skills needed in contemporary time.