Uche Usim, Abuja
Beneficiaries of the Federal Government’s N-Power programme in Ebonyi State have hailed the initiative, describing it as one that has transformed their lives and those who benefit from the services they render at their various primary places of assignment (PPAs).
Speaking from their PPAs via individual video recordings made available to the National Social Investment Office NSIO, the N-Power beneficiaries expressed gratitude to the Federal Government for the conceptualisation and implementation of the youth-oriented job enhancement scheme, which according to them, is making a difference in the lives of thousands of young people across the country.
Okuchi Okechukwu, an N-Power beneficiary deployed to Urban Community Primary School in Abakiliki, Ebonyi State, said beyond the knowledge and experience gained by being engaged to teach under the N power Scheme, she has also been able to deploy resources earned to improve her small scale business.
” I teach Primary Two Pupils who are mostly from the Hausa Community. Since I resumed here, I have made a lot of positive impact on the lives of these pupils. I am most grateful for this opportunity. The programme has changed my financial status and improved my bakery business. Thank you Mr President for this opportunity”, she said.
Ude Victoria, another N-Power beneficiary in Ebonyi State also said monthly stipends she receives as a beneficiary of the program have in no small measure boosted her soya beans trade.
“I learnt how to make soya beans a long time ago, but due to lack of funds, I couldn’t do anything. Thank God for this N-Power job, which has helped me raise some money to invest in my business”, Victoria remarked.
For Igwe Jude, an N-Power teach volunteer batch A (2016) in Abakiliki, Ebonyi State, the experience of being enlisted in the program has been worthwhile, noting that the scheme provides a platform to sharpen his skills for higher responsibilities in future.
“I teach Chemistry here in Urban Modern Secondary School in Abakiliki, Ebonyi State. This school is the biggest secondary school in Ebonyi State so they have lots of students. When we came in, they didn’t have enough teachers, and so our deployment helped a great deal. It’s been a good experience because as we teach the students, we also learn from them as well”, Jude said.
Recall that the N-Power programme was introduced in 2016 by the President Buhari administration as a job enhancement scheme aimed at imbibing the learn-work-entrepreneurship culture in Nigerian youth between 18 and 35 for graduates, as well as for non-graduates.
About 500,000 youths, spread across the 774 LGAs of the country are currently enrolled in the programme and have since been deployed to teach in public schools, act as health workers in primary health centres and also as agricultural extension advisors to small holder farmers in the communities. Beneficiaries under the graduate category take home N30,000 monthly for their services.
The idea is to engage the young Nigerian and expose him/her to the work environment with a view to helping them acquire relevant skills and experiences for future endeavors. The selection and payment processes are insulated from subjectivity, being technology-driven. Consequently, a level-playing field has been created for engagement with the programme, while payment is effected directly into the accounts of the successful candidates.