The North East Development Commission (NEDC), yesterday approved an initial seed capital of N6bn to address the Human Capital Development need as well as the poor Human Development Index in the region.
The fund according to the broad is to develop sufficient human capital in order to acquire a sustainable capacity for infrastructural and socio-economic development of the northeast region.
In his address at the inauguration of North East Development Commission Education Endowment Fund (NEDC-EEF) in Abuja, the chief executive officer Mohammed Alkali said the measure would fight the menace of low human capital and illiteracy which had been traced to be the highest in the region compared to the other geographical zones.
To address this gap, he said, “The NEDC Governing Board, therefore, took a bold decision in order to address the need for Human Capital Development and the poor Human Development Index, hence the Board at its Board Meeting of 12 December, 2019 set aside an initial seed capital of N6 billion for the Endowment Fund to take-off.
“These measures will offer citizens of Member States equal opportunities in ICT skill acquisition, educational training at graduate and postgraduate levels and also provide educational training opportunities to indigent family members at ward level in all the states.
“It will also further boost the education of the beneficiaries of Safe School Initiative beyond secondary school level and offer opportunities for training orphaned children and other vulnerable groups currently not benefitting from the Safe School Initiative.”
Alkali said the fund will also be used to provide short-term but impactful entrepreneurship training programmes to candidates whose primary or secondary education was truncated by the Boko Haram crisis.
Speaking further he said, the fund will also help to “offer special scholarship opportunities to talented youths engaged in sports.”
He added that the commission will also seek to collaborate with statutory
and non-statutory partners in attracting other educational opportunities for the Northeast region.
Speaking earlier, the chairman, NEDC, Major General Paul Tarfa, said the dwindling human development indices of the Northeast region remain the poorest in the country.
He said the fund aimed at improving the human capital development for the North-East is appropriate, both in relevance and timing.