Dangote Cement Plc has doled out multi-million naira educational scholarships just as it commenced training for youth in 15 host communities of its Ibese cement plant in Ogun State.
No fewer than 115 students in various institutions received cheques for their scholarships in the annual scholarship award programme while 30 others commenced skill acquisition training on tailoring and fashion designing coordinated by the Industrial Trust Fund (ITF).
Speaking at the opening of the empowerment training programme, plant director, Dangote Cement Ibese, Mr. Azad Nawabuddin, explained that the company has made a lot of contributions to the socio-economic development of its neighbouring communities in the spheres of health, education and infrastructure, community youth empowerment scheme.
According to him, Dangote Cement is committed to building the capacity of the people and institutions in the communities, particularly youths by identifying skill gaps and partnering to up their skills and make them self-reliant.
“215 youths across the 16 host communities which constitute Dangote’s key stakeholders have so far been trained and empowered with different skills since the commencement of operations in Ibese with significant impact on the local economy.
“Our partnership with the Industrial Training Fund (ITF) started in 2019 with the training and empowerment of 15 youths from the host communities on catering and event management, while 50 youths benefited from the scheme in the specialised area of acutherapy (alternative medicine) in 2020,” Nawabuddin pointed out.
He further said that the commencement of the training coincided with the flag-off of the 2021 Dangote Sustainability Week in Ibese Plant, with the theme ‘Building a sustainable future – the Dangote Way’.
In the same vein, area manager ITF, Ogun State, Mrs. Funmi Cooker, commended Dangote Cement for the gesture to train the youths, promising that the beneficiaries would get the best of training in tailoring and fashion designing which would serve as source of livelihoods for them.
She said the year 2021 has been declared as a year of skill escalation for prosperity because the ITF management has realised that accelerated skill acquisition is the only way to stem the rampant unemployment especially among the youths because skill acquisition will alleviate poverty, youth restiveness, create jobs and wealth in the economy and country.
Cooker commended Dangote Cement’s efforts by keying into the programme towards the developments of its immediate society. She tasked other corporate organisations to emulate the good work of Dangote Cement in this regard.
Expressing the happiness of the communities with Dangote Cement in the area of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), the vice-chairman of Ewekoro Local Government Area, Mr. Olabode Sunkanmi, thanked the management of Dangote Cement for the empowerment programme, and said it would go a long way in sustaining the youths and reducing unemployment.