By Philip Yatai and Sani Abdulrahman
Kaduna – A Kaduna-based NGO, Youth Eco System Support and Social-Development Initiative (YESSDI), on Monday called on Kaduna State Government to focus attention on youths empowerment programmes to take idle youths off the streets.
The President of the NGO, Mr Adbuljalal Abdullahi, who made the call in interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Kaduna, said that the measure would reduce the rate of crime in the state.
Abdullahi said the state government should come up with youth centered empowerment programmes as a sure step towards combating the menace of social vices perpetuated by youths.
“If youths are economically engaged, they will be useful to themselves and the society, this in the long run will reduce the rate of crime and other social vices in the state.
“Youths related crimes have continued to frustrate efforts by government, development partners and other relevant stakeholders to ensure socio-economic development, because majority of the youths are idle.
“The youths are idle because they either do not have relevant skills to engage in any economic venture, or they have the skills but lack capital or any form of support to put their skills to good use.
“As such, they become frustrated and engage in all kinds of crimes as a means of survival.
“The only way out of this social ill is to ensure that youths are not only empowered with skills but supported to do something meaningful with the skills to contribute to social development,” he said.
Abdullahi said that it was on this ground that YESSDI plan to empower 150 indigent youths from Kaduna South Local Government Area of the state with various skills to live a meaningful life.
He said that the youths would be trained on various skills such as catering, hair dressing, information and communication technology and soap making among others.
The official said that the beneficiaries would be selected from six communities of the local government namely: Kinkinau, Unguan Mua’zu, Kabala West, Tudun Wada, Barnawa and Unguan Sunusi.
He added that the training would be free, and priority would be given to areas with high number of unemployed youths.
According to him, the initiative is aimed at reducing unemployment and supporting government to provide jobs for unemployed youths at the grassroots.
“Our goal is to overcome social and economic barriers that limits youths ability to access relevant skills that will empower them for self-reliance.
“If majority of youths are self-employed, most of the economic challenges affecting the country will be averted and criminal activities will be minimized,” he said.
He advised idle youths to acquire one form of skill or the other that would keep them economically busy and keep them away from crimes.