…parades strides in education, job creation, investment drive
…gives each pilot start-up N500,000, earmarks N100m grant for SMEs in 2019
The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has assured the people of the state of his administration’s resolve to vigorously pursue policies and programmes that would guarantee shared prosperity and engender more growth opportunities across the state.
Obaseki gave the assurance at the Alaghodaro Youth Summit/Job Fair tagged: ‘Pathway to Prosperity’ held at the Edo Innovation Hub in Benin-city on Friday as part of activities marking his administration’s second anniversary celebration.
He said his administration is concerned about the plight of youths and is determined to restore hope, which informed the theme of the youth summit.
According to him, “We realised that Edo youths are aspirational because of their dream to dominate their environment. Our role as a government is to help you achieve these dreams.”
Obaseki said that despite the challenges faced by his administration, the state government has started on a good note by restructuring the basic education sector with the Edo Basic Education Transformation programme (EDOBEST), which has successfully trained 7,000 digital teachers to change the narrative of basic education in the state.
He added that the promise to create 200,000 jobs is becoming a reality with the creation of 77,200 jobs achieved in collaboration with federal government agencies and multilateral institutions.
“EdoJobs initiative is not only about giving you work, but it is part of it. It was set up to teach you, train you as well as give you skills so that you can find jobs or create jobs for yourself and be an employer of labour,” he explained.
The governor also launched the Edo Graduate Internship Scheme (GIS) and the Edo Start-up Fund Initiative which are aimed at providing skills for the youths as well as access to finance for small businesses in order to eliminate obstacles that hinder youths from contributing to economic development.
The governor, who was visibly elated with the beneficiaries of the Edo Start-up Fund Initiative, gave each of the registered businesses N500,000 to scale up their businesses and provide job opportunities for others in the state.
Each of the beneficiaries of the Edo Start-up Fund Initiative received N300, 000.
Obaseki promised to make available N100million grant to fund start-ups in the state’s 2019 budget.
Speaking on the Edo Graduate Internship Scheme, the governor said: “The scheme has identified projects in different areas like construction, technology and agriculture where we send youth for training. As they get trained, they will earn a stipend, and at the end of the training, we will place them on specific jobs.”
Obaseki also disclosed that the Benin Technical College is almost ready, adding that “by the last quarter of next year, we would have completed the restructuring of our Colleges of Education with campuses in Abudu to train primary school teachers and teachers for children with special needs; the Igueben campus will train secondary school teachers while teachers for technical and sports education will be trained on the Auchi campus.”
Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Jobs Creation and Skills Development, Mrs. Ukinebo Dare, called on the participants to register on the EdoJobs portal so as to benefit from the 200,000 jobs promised by the government for the Edo people.
She said: “One hundred and seventy two employers have applied for the Edo State internship and apprenticeship skills scheme, and 18 of them are government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).”
While welcoming participants and youth to the summit, the state Commissioner for Wealth Creation, Cooperatives and Employment, Emmanuel Usoh, said the Obaseki-led administration is well on track to fulfill its promise to the people on jobs creation through EdoJobs.
Usoh added that the administration has made appreciable progress in creating jobs for the youths of the state, and in two years, there’s certifiable evidence to show for it.