FG Targets 20m Jobs in Buhari’s ‘Next Level’ Administration

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James Emejo in Abuja

The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Okechukwu Enelamah yesterday said the federal government has evolved pragmatic strategies that will generate about 20 million jobs from four key sectors of the Nigerian economy “within the tenure of the next level”.

He said President Buhari has further strengthened the drive to curtail the country’s rising unemployment by creating jobs and by providing employable skills for the teeming youths, through the Industrial Training Fund (ITF).

Speaking at a stakeholders’ meeting on strategies for job creation by the federal government, the minister said: “In order to sustain and build on the successes recorded in this regard in the first tenure of Mr. President, we are articulating and strategising with a renewed impetus towards combating the twin evils of unemployment and insecurity.”

Enelamah added that his ministry had already charged the fund to come up with revolutionary multi-faceted job wealth creation strategies that would lead to a lasting solution to hydra-headed problem of unemployment in the country.

He was represented at the occasion by the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, Mr. Edet Sunday.

He said: “I am glad to inform this distinguished audience that the ITF has done justice to the task assigned to them.

“From the report I have received, the ITF has been able to propose pragmatic strategies that within tenure of the next level, will generate about 20 million jobs from four key sectors of the Nigerian economy.

“These key sectors are the agriculture, construction, transport and the services sectors. The report, which is to be presented to us shortly by the ITF Director-General, forms the crux of this meeting.

“The meeting will be expected to examine all the aspects of the report with a view to dissecting all the recommendations therein and proffering additional strategies and action plan that will lead to jobs for all Nigerians.”

Meanwhile, Director General/Chief Executive, ITF, Mr. Joseph Ari, has lamented that unemployment had resulted in “needless incidences of violence, criminality and social vices perpetrated by persons that ordinarily should be contributing significantly to the development of our dear nation.”

He said those who should be earning sustainable livelihoods are barely able to eke out a living, stressing that the number of people who are without jobs in the country remained scary and staggering “and should be a source of worry to any administration that is as committed to the welfare of Nigerians as the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.”