James Sowole in Akure
Ondo State Governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, yesterday said one of the major problems facing the youths in the country is unemployment, as over four million youths are struggling to get jobs meant for one million persons very year.
Akeredolu stated this in Akure, Ondo State capital, at the opening of a three-day training organised by the Ministry of Youth and Social Development in conjunction with the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
The governor, who was represented by his Deputy, Hon Agboola Ajayi, said one of the core values of his cardinal action plan as a government was human capital development, being the foundation of the socio-economic growth of the state.
About 360 persons are participating in the training on different business enterprise which started yesterday.
According to Akeredolu, “As our administration is committed to sustainable youth empowerment, this three-day capacity building training is intended to unlock and re-invent your creative potential and provide another opportunity for you to either start or scale up your existing businesses.
“We cannot pretend to be unaware of the teething challenges confronting up and coming young entrepreneurs, notably the inability to access the initial capital outlay.”
Akeredolu said the agricultural value chain business was significant aspect of his government’s plan to create jobs for the unemployed youths and to grow the state economy.
He revealed that the business had engaged over 18,000 youths, while social protection and reinvestment programmes had currently engaged about 50,000 youths through its various components.
Also speaking, the state Commissioner for Youth and Sport Development, Dotun Owanikin, said the programme showed the commitment of the state governor towards youths in the state.
He said the training would ensure the youths are self-reliant as well as empowering them to ensure a sustainable employment opportunities in the state.
Owanikin revealed that each local government area had a minimum of 20 youths, saying: “What we are trying to do here is to start a chain of employment for the youths in the state.”