By Vincent Ujumadu
Awka—THE National Directorate of Employment, NDE, predicted yesterday of likely increase in cases of kidnapping, robbery, prostitution and youth restiveness in the country, in view of high rate of unemployment among youths.
The Director-General of NDE, Mr. Olakunle Obayan, who spoke in Awka at the opening ceremony of the “Start Your Own Business, SYOB,” training of the directorate, tasked the youths, especially graduates of tertiary institutions, to acquire skills that would take them away from these vices.
No fewer than 150 youths under the vocational skills development were being trained in the state, just as 120 students in the junior secondary school cadre were also being trained in various skills under the holiday programme.
Similarly, 318 youths received N20,000 each under the Artisan Resettlement and Mentoring Scheme at the ceremony in Awka.
According to him, the concept of SYOB was borne out the desire to ensure that unemployed graduates of tertiary institutions were exposed to the benefits of self-reliance through entrepreneurship.
Obayan said the training would also guide the youths in their choices of business ideas, which, he stated, would instill in them self- confidence in managing their business successfully.
He said: “I am sure that you are aware that statistics of unemployment in Nigeria is high. It is also important to note that more universities are emerging, which would mean more graduates being churned out to join the already bloated market.
“This particular situation can only result in frustration and give rise to various deviant behaviours, such as youth restiveness, prostitution, kidnapping, robbery and so on.”
He observed that most developed nations achieved economic prosperity through small- scale businesses that propelled employment for their populace, noting that it was for that reason that NDE encouraged the formation of small businesses that had the potential to develop into big entities, depending on the commitment of the business owners.
Obayan said the purpose of the training was to ensure that the beneficiaries recognized their individual potentials, as well as be able to write feasibility reports that would expose them to funding facilities.