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NDDC, ITF Collaborate on Skill Up Artisan Scheme for Youths

 

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NDDC, ITF Collaborate on Skill Up Artisan Scheme for Youths

The Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, and the Industrial Training Fund, ITF, have commenced collaboration to actualise the Skill-Up Artisans, SUPA, a transformative initiative of the Federal Government, for the youths of the Niger Delta region.

Speaking during a courtesy visit by a delegation from ITF at the NDDC headquarters in Port Harcourt, the NDDC Managing Director, Dr Samuel Ogbuku, acknowledged the potentials of the SUPA programme, stating that the Commission was eager to serve as an enabler in achieving the goals of the Federal Government in this regard.

He said that sequel to the SUPA initiative to send 14,000 work-force of skilled artisans to the United Arab Emirates on manpower/skill labour export arrangement through the ITF, the Commission would partner with the agency to ensure that Niger Delta artisans would benefit from the scheme.

Ogbuku noted: “The Skill Up Artisan programme being part of the Renewed Hope Agenda of Mr. President is aimed at creating availability of skilled workforce for domestic and international export; boosting the economy through gainful employment and increasing diaspora remittances as a result of international manpower and skilled labour exports.”

According to Ogbuku: “Engaging the youths meaningfully will help to reduce crime in the Niger Delta region. We are going to use the ITF platform to up the skills of the artisans and youths of the Niger Delta region.

“We have set up a committee to work out the details of the collaboration with ITF. We are also in partnership with the Niger Delta Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Trade, Mines and Agriculture, NDCCITMA, which has been registered and inaugurated. Most of our training programmes will be channeled through the Chamber of Commerce and the Bank of Industry. This structure will ensure sustainability.”

He appealed to ITF to give NDDC 10,000 slots in the group of people to be trained, stating that NDDC would pay for their training. We are eager to ensure that our youths and artisans that will be trained are gainfully employed.

The NDDC Chief Executive Officer observed that the Commission introduced a youth development and empowerment scheme, known as Holistic Opportunities, Projects and Engagement, HOPE, to create a comprehensive database of the youth population of the Niger Delta region.

He called on the youths of the Niger Delta region to ensure that they are registered on the website of project HOPE, which will benefit all Niger Delta youths, charging them to beware of fake websites and ensure that they visit only the genuine website of project HOPE (https://ndjobsskillsdb.nddc.gov.ng/data-register/ ).

Speaking earlier, the Director General of ITF, Dr Afiz Ogun, explained that the Skill-Up training programme would empower, train, and license 10 million young artisans through tech-enabled skills to promote industry standard excellence.

He stated: “SUPA is a comprehensive initiative aimed at aiding quality service delivery through the certification and licensing of artisans to promote the growth of small and medium-sized enterprises. The programme ensures the availability of a skilled workforce for domestic industries, thereby reducing labour import dependency.

“SUPA is in line with global employment trends, which have shifted as a result of the way technology has changed the face of many industries. The preference for white-collar jobs has resulted in a scarcity of qualified Nigerian artisans. SUPA seeks to reverse this trend.

“Just like the NDDC Project HOPE, SUPA will identify, register and categorise artisans across the different sectors of the economy to enable artisans access essential tools, equipment and funds to expand their trades to ensure Nigerian artisans are certified, licensed and operate using standardised methods and practices.”

“We appreciate your interest to serve as an enabler in actualising the objective of SUPA and your effort at empowering the youths of Niger Delta region. We propose that you constitute a committee to work with our team towards developing a framework for this collaboration.”

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