Bassey Inyang in Calabar
The Industrial Training Fund (ITF) has disclosed that in the last one year, it has reimbursed a total of N6,587,941,996,45 billion to over 500 companies that have contributed to the training of their employees as provided by the law establishing it the fund.
The Director-General/Chief Executive of the ITF, Joseph Ari, who made the disclosure in Calabar, Cross River State, recently, said the amount represented 50 per cent of the employers’ contribution to the training of their employees as provided for by the law establishing the fund, which he cited as decree number 47 of 1971 as amended in 2011 by the National Assembly, thus making it an act of Parliament.
Speaking at a media briefing, Ari who was represented by the Calabar Area Manager of ITF, Mrs. Ifeyinwa Anozie, said: “In line with the enabling Act, the incumbent management ensured that all contributing employers that remitted their contributions to the fund were reimbursed provided they met the conditions for such reimbursement including the payment in full of their annual training contribution, training of their workforce across all carders, presentation of evidence of training, acceptance of students on the Students Industrial Work Experience Scheme (SIWES) and application for reimbursement within the stipulated period, among others.
“In all, a total of 510 companies were reimbursed to the tune of N6,587,941,996,45 which is the biggest payout to contributing employers as reimbursement in a calendar year since the establishment of the ITF.
“Our commitment is to continue to reimburse our contributors provided they meet the criteria for the payments.”
Ari, who disclosed that the fund has trained over 20 million Nigerians in various sectors of the economy since it was established in 1971, said it trained about 300,000 Nigerian youth in 2018.
Ari, said the training was in line with the fund’s mandate to, among others, provide, promote and encourage the acquisition of skills, with a view to generating a pool of indigenous manpower sufficient to meet the needs of the private and public sectors of the economy.
He said most of the beneficiaries of their training were either in paid employment or as employers of labour in different sectors of the economy.
He said despite their achievement, in line with the policy direction of President Muhammadu Buhari, the fund re-articulated, and refocused its activities with greater emphasis on acquisition of skills, job creation, so as to tackle unemployment and breed a new generation of entrepreneurs.
He said through its programmes, the fund has consistently placed Nigeria among the skills hub of the world.