By Musa Sunusi Ahmad
Nasarawa State Governor, Engineer Abdullahi Sule, has flagged of the expanded special public work programme, initiated by the Federal Government, aimed at empowering 774,000 vulnerable and unskilled from across the country.
Flagging off the programme at a ceremony in Lafia, on Tuesday, Engineer Sule, while commending the President Muhammadu Buhari administration for initiating the scheme, urged the beneficiaries to take full advantage of the programme to derive optimum benefits.
According to the Governor, his administration has mapped out various programmes to facilitate the success of the 13000 beneficiaries during the three months period for the scheme.
Engineer Sule specifically commended the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment for the laudable initiative, aimed at taking youth in the state off the streets, by engaging them in different special work programmes.
He noted that the programme is also intended at improving the quality of lives of the people through meaningful ventures, in line with the vision of his administration to create job opportunities, poverty reduction, as well as wealth generation.
The Governor described the programme as timely, adding that it came at a time when the global economy is ravaged by the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic, leading to joblessness, reduction in income levels, collapse of small and medium scale businesses, poverty and death, among others.
He pointed out that in complementing the effort of the Federal Government, his administration since assumption of office, has initiated different empowerment programmes by engaging the teeming youth and women on various skills of human endeavour.
Engineer Sule Let reiterated the commitment of his administration to continue to initiate programmes that have direct bearing on the lives of the people.
He then charged the implementing agency, the National Directorate of Employment and the supervising ministry, that for the programme to be meaningful, they must monitor and provide necessary support to ensure that it sees the light of the day.
In a keynote address, Minister of State Ministry of Labour and Employment, who doubles as the board chairman and supervising minister of the NDE, Mr. Festus Keyamo, disclosed that the pilot programme was initially implemented in eight states of the country, in order to gauge its impact on addressing the rising unemployment, as well as insecurity.
According to Keyamo, the target of the programme is to immediately engage the 774, 000 selected unemployed Nigerians across the 774 local government areas of the country.
Keyamo was represented at the event by Abubakar Sadiq Nuhu, Director, Human Resources Management, National Board for Technology Incubation Centre.
Also, in a welcome address, acting Director General, National Directorate of Employment (NDE), Mallam Abubakar Nuhu Fikpo, said having successfully conducted the pilot phase of the programme in 2020 in eight states of Adamawa, Borno, Ebonyi, Edo, Ekiti, Jigawa, Katsina and Kwata, President Buhari approved for its implementation across all the 36 states and the FCT.
Fikpo was also represented at the event Idris Dauda Wase from the NDE.