The minister of youth and sports development, Sunday Dare, has reiterated the need to have more youth trained in digital skills in addressing the problem of employment facing the country.
He made the assertion at the 2021 Annual Luncheon of Government College, Ibadan, Old Boys Association (GCIOBA) held in Ibadan on Sunday.
Dare, who described digital literacy as a ‘Panacea for Youth Unemployment’, emphasized the need for improved digital education among the youths.
“There have been focused efforts to close the digital skills gap through a number of digital capacity building initiatives. Some are ongoing as we speak.
“Also, ongoing is the implementation of the Nigerian Youth Investment Fund. Mr President listened to our arguments about the need to make our youth develop their Entrepreneurship spirit. Despite the competing needs for resources, the President approved the establishment of the first Youth Investment Fund ever put in place in Nigeria: N 75 B released over three years.
“N25B per annul for three years at 5%, moratorium, capacity building, no guarantor. The first tranche has been disbursed to applicants across the country and the second tranche is about to commence. This is what is called putting our money where our Youths are.”
He further stated that, “It is worthy to note that the importance of Digital Literacy to employ-ability is that it is a necessity to succeed in the modern economy. Having the basic digital literacy skills can enhance the employ ability of individuals. Most jobs require digital literacy.
“In Nigeria, with the high level of youth unemployment, a youth skilled in basic and intermediate digital skills is more likely to access jobs locally and globally. Opportunities such as outsourcing, digital marketing, software development, artificial Intelligence, data analysis, IT administration and many others are job-creating opportunities.”
Speaking on the DEEL initiative, the Minister affirmed, “The DEEL initiative is designed to unleash the potential of youth and to leverage on the youth bulge as a demographic dividend by providing opportunities for investment in youth innovation and energies through a coordinated mechanism that will deliver cross-cutting benefits.”