November 14, 2016

ITF, SMEDAN train 10,000 youths

ABUJA—THE Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency, SMEDAN, yesterday, tasked the 10,000 youths acquiring skills in agribusiness, fabrication, ICT, wood-work, building technology, electrical/electronics, leather work, textile/garment/fashion designing, hospitality business and others.

This was stated in an address by the Director General, SMEDAN, Dr. Dikko Umaru, who was represented by Director, Engineering, Technology, and Infrastructure, Engr. Abu Ozigi, at the closing ceremony of the entrepreneurship training programme under the National Industrial Skill Development Programme, NISDP, held at the Enterprise Training Institute, Gwagwalada, Abuja.

Umaru also disclosed that 10,000 youth in 19 states were trained by the Industrial Training Fund, ITF, in practical in various vocations for three months and one month for entrepreneurial development.

The states include Abia, Adamawa, Anambra, Bauchi, Borno, Cross River, Delta, Ebonyi, Federal Capital Territory, Kaduna, Katsina, Kwara, Lagos, Nasarawa, Niger, Ogun, Plateau, Sokoto, and Zamfara.

He said: “I am aware that the various skills you have acquired are in consonance with the priority sectors needed to rejuvenate the economy and to help us intensify the Made-in-Nigeria campaign.

“As the agency mandated to build a structured and efficient MSME sector, we will continue to strive for excellence and strategic growth through forming strong partnerships with reputable public and private sector institutions. This is in order to build an all-inclusive and conducive business-to-business and access to market environment.

“At the end of this exercise, which is running simultaneously in 19 states and 57 centres of the country, not less than 10,000 micro-entrepreneurs would have been trained. This will no doubt add a lot of value to the MSME sub-sector and increase the pool of entrepreneurs needed to build the critical mass to stem the tide of unemployment.”

According to the SMEDAN boss, the agency would not hesitate to link the graduates with credible partners and mentors that can impact positively on their proposed businesses.

Meanwhile, he revealed that plans were on the way by the agency to commence open air business clinic to solve challenges in the initial take-off small businesses.