CALABAR – The National Directorate of Employment (NDE) in Cross River has trained 727 unemployed youths as part of efforts to reduce unemployment in the country, its Coordinator, Mr Edem Duke, has said.
Duke said in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Calabar that the training was conducted between January and December 2014.
“In 2014, we have trained 50 youths in different agricultural programmes including crop production, poultry, food preservation, aqua-culture and others in the state.
“We have also trained 296 unemployed youths in some vocational trades such as plumbing, welding, auto-mechanic, painting, computer repair, fabrication and others.
“Under our Small Scale Enterprise programme, we gave out a soft loan of N20,000 each to 100 unemployed youths to enable them start up a business’’, he said.
The coordinator said that the loan would be repaid within three years with a compound interest of nine per cent.
According to him, the gesture is meant to fully engage the youths to be self reliant.
“We have also recruited 81 graduates into our graduate coaching scheme to teach school-leavers who have deficiency in their senior secondary school examinations.
“The programme lasted for three months and we were paying the graduates N10, 000 each per month, and the outcome of the results was appreciable,’’ he said.
Duke disclosed that the NDE had placed 20 graduates on six months attachment with some reputable organisations, while 20 others are undergoing training in solar energy in Calabar.
The coordinator said anothers set of 100 youths are also being trained in different technical skills under the Advanced National Basic Open Apprenticeship Scheme (A-NOAS).
He said that 60 indigenes of Akampka Local Government are currently been trained on Community Based Technical Skills.
Duke advised the beneficiaries to make good use of the training in order to contribute to the development of Nigeria’s economy.
He lauded the efforts of the NDE Director General, Mr Malam Mohammed Abubakar, for facilitating the trainings at state levels. (NAN)