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4,355 Niger Delta youths empowered with market-relevant skills

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Dara Akala, executive director PIND Foundation

At least 4,355 Niger Delta youths have been trained and equipped with market-relevant skills.

The youths were drawn from Akwa Ibom, Abia and Rivers and were trained in emerging sectors such as agriculture, construction, leatherwork, ICT and renewable energy to enable create jobs for themselves and reduce restiveness.

The youths were trained by the Foundation for Partnership Initiative in the Niger Delta (PIND) under its Niger Delta Youth Employment Pathways (NDYEP) project.

The Executive Director of PIND, Dr. Dara Akala, during an award in Port Harcourt at the weekend, said the youths were trained according to the need of the labour market as revealed by an assessment.

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Akala said: “The issue of unemployment is a challenge to the development of the Nigeria Delta. It is more severe in the Niger Delta Region because some of the states with the highest unemployment in the nation are Akwa Ibom, Rivers and Abia”

“So, this programme was designed to address unemployment in a very practical way. As we said, over 4,500 youths have been trained in the scheme. Besides the training, they were equipped with practical skills to be able to get jobs. As we speak, those people that benefited from this programme have either got paid employment or they have created enterprises of their own.

“But this is very small compared to the scale of unemployment in the region. It is, however, a very good start. So what we are demonstrating is a creative approach that emphasizes on the market relevance skills.”

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