From Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa
The Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) has announced its readiness to stop the era of skill acquisition and capacity training of Niger Delta youths in foreign institutions, declaring that the commission is ready to partner with Nigerian Institutions in area of capacity building and skill acquisition training for the youths of the region.
The Special Adviser to the Sole Administrator of NDDC on Youth Matters, Mr Udengs Eradir who disclosed this while on a visit to the Niger Delta University,(NDU) Wilberforce Island, and Bayelsa Medical University(BMU), Yenagoa both in Bayelsa State said the new vision of the sole administrator of the commission, Mr Okon Effiong Akwa is to save cost from foreign skill training and ensure quality training of youths from the region in recognized Nigerian institutions and build capacity in Education, Agriculture and Health.
Engr. Udengs Eradiri, who led the delegation which included the Deputy Director in the NDDC on Commercial and Industrial Development, Dan Anjunwa, State said the decision does not affected the on-going foreign scholarship beneficiaries,
According to Eradiri, NDDC would continue to assess the training facilities available and assist in upgrading such facilities for quality training of youths from the region.
In his interaction with the Management Board of the BMU led by Prof. Ebitimitula Etebu and the Niger Delta University (NDU) led by the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Samuel G. Edoumiekumo, Eradiri explained that NDDC is exploring ways of saving the country the huge cost of training youths in foreign institutions and invest the funds in upgrading needed training facilities in Nigerian institutions to ensure quality training of youths from the Niger Delta.
” Our visit is to inspect some institutions in the region to partner with the commission on quality training and capacity building of the youths of the region. Why spend much money abroad when you can spend it in the upgrading of Nigerian institution to get quality and employable training for our youths. Over a hundred thousand dollars are spent on one youth abroad and are not employable. But the new NDDC wants to train youths that will be employable.
“We need to add more value to our Nigerian Institutions. The commission is not interested in claims by some people that they can train our youths but they don’t have capacity. The NDDC is now interested in sustained quality training from recognized institutions rather than merely sharing starter packs. We are to support institutions for the proper training of youths. NDDC is ready to upgrade.”
Etebu and Edoumiekumo respectively in their remarks commended the vision of the Mr Okon Effiong Akwa led NDDC and said the institutions are ready for a renewed partnership with the commission.