Dayo Johnson Akure
IN a bid to tackle the hydra-headed problem of youth unemployment bedevilling the country, 3000 unemployed graduates are to be trained in the digital economy in Ondo state.
Speaking at the flag off of the Digital Training Programme tagged “Ondo-Engage” in Akure, the governor said the program was organized by the State government through the State Information Technology Agency (SITA) in partnership with Envivo Communications Limited and Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
The flag-off ceremony was part of the activities marking the first 100 days of the governor’s second term in office .
Akeredolu who said that the training will last for nine months, pointed out that participants will be paid monthly stipend throughout the period of the training and giving Laptops and subscription.
He said that ” one of the major ways to address Nigeria’s insecurity and other socio-economic challenges is through the dignified engagement and empowerment of the youthful population.
According to him” building the digital skills of the young graduates will go a long way to equip them with relevant skills for IT jobs.
“Undoubtedly, ICT has turned the world into a global village as it has assisted in automating government processes; using technology to solve common problems in the society; entrepreneurship development; proffering digital solution to problems of unemployment, insecurity and economic challenges; improving production.
“It is in realization of the importance of digital education that our administration decided to partner ENVIVO Communications Limited, leveraging on the various CBN funding initiatives such as the Creative Industry Financing Initiative (CIFI).
“Since the inception of our administration, we have made a lot of progress in the implementation of our ICT Drive through the State Information Technology Agency (SITA) amongst which are: implementation of State Integrated Financial Management System (SIFMIS); conduct of digital training programme for 218 teachers, 270 secondary students, over 350 unemployed youths and 62 entrepreneurs from the three senatorial districts of the State;
“Upgrading and recalibrating of Permanent Residency Card, also known as Kaadi Igbeayo; about 12,000 pregnant women have so far registered under the programme; Establishment of Akure Tech Hub, FUTA, for Ondo Central and signing of MoU for OkitipupaTech Hub, OAUSTECH, Ondo South;
“Automation of revenue collection to improve revenue generation for the State; management and control of utility infrastructure for improved revenue generation and creating of a friendly environment for investors in the state;
“Procurement of ICT services and equipment for effective service delivery; Digital Village Projects in five locations within the State for continuous digital skills acquisition; and installation of dedicated 155 MBPS Broadband internet service to all MDAs, etc,” he said.
Akeredolu said that after the training programme, Envivo Communications Limited in partnership with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) will ensure entrepreneurship opportunities for the trainees, through creation of credit windows.
He added that the gesture will engender employment and wealth thereby ensuring peace and stability in the State.
“At the end of this training programme, it is our expectation that most of the challenges being faced by the unemployed graduates will be drastically addressed.
Earlier, the Chairman of the State Information Technology Agency, Mr Olumbe Akinkugbe, said the participants will be drawn from the three senatorial districts of the state, adding that 1000 participants will be trained from each district.
Akinkugbe noted that the governor’s desire was to use Information Technology to drive an accelerated social and economic development in the state across all sectors, including healthcare, education , new jobs opportunities among others.
He noted that the training was to positively engage the youth in entrepreneurship skills with a view to making them self reliant in the competitive digital market.
“it is the believe of the governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN to leverage on the current active digital space in the state to train and engage the youths in lucrative aspects of digital economy with a view to bringing out the creative ability in them”
To make the program easy for the participants, he said that the training package has been divided into three centres; Ondo North, Central and southern senatorial districts with one thousand per center for administrative convenience.