The minister of youth and sports development, Mr Sunday Dare, has described the ongoing first ever National Youth Conference (NYC) in Abuja as a perfect opportunity to deepen youth engagements, conversations and collaborations.
Dare who spoke at the opening ceremony of the three-day Conference said the conference is timeously in addressing the needs of Nigerian youth, saying the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development’s programmes are focused on providing opportunities for the youth in such areas as training, digital skills, entrepreneurship, soft skills, internships and access to credit and finance, among others.
He said the DEEL programme initiated by the government of President Muhammadu Buhari was to fill the knowledge and skills gap in the Nigerian youth. “Our DEEL initiative focuses on Digital literacy and Skill Acquisition, Entrepreneurship, Employability and Leadership. We focus more on training and enterprise. We have trained close to 198,000 youth in the past two years. The Nigeria Investment Fund (NYIF) Scheme provides access to funds much needed by MSMEs and thousands of our youth are benefiting. So far, over 6,000 from across the country have benefited and we have solid data to back this up. Another 10,000 have been shortlisted for training before benefiting, the process goes on,” he said.
In his remarks at the Conference, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development, Alh. Isma’il Abubakar, stated that the National Youth Conference is one of the Ministry’s initiatives targeted at harnessing the thoughts and aspirations of Nigerian youth with a view to aggregating them as a means of assessing the current youth situation in the country and forge workable strategies to address them.
He assured that the Ministry will continue to provide a conducive environment towards the full implementation of the various youth initiatives and programmes in line with the policy thrust of the present administration.