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Unemployed Youth To Benefit From N25bn Fund

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Governor Akinwunmi
Ambode of Lagos State said on Saturday that only creative unemployed youths would benefit from the first tranche of the N25 billion State Employment Trust Fund loan scheme.
Ambode made the disclosure at a Youth Empowerment Programme organised by the `Eleniyancare Leadership Foundation’ in Epe, Lagos state featuring over 1,000 youths drawn from across the state.
The Tide learnt reports that the empowerment programme is entitled: “Unlocking the Potentials Within: Making your Ideas Work.”
The programme is convened at the instance of Mr Segun Olulade, Chairman, Lagos State House of Assembly Committee on Health Services.
The governor, who was represented by Prince Babatunde Durosimi-Etti, said that the fund would soon be released to only deserving creative entrepreneurial youths as loan.
“His Excellency has said that the disbursement procedure of the fund would soon be out.
“I am aware the board had met with various institutions, they have completed their processes, and they are just putting finishing touches to it.
“There will be opportunity for start offs. There will be opportunity for existing artisans and entrepreneurs and in addition, there will be opportunity for small businesses.
“Ideas, creative and innovations are the prerequisites, opportunities are there, and if you look around your environment the opportunities are there.
“It is going to reach every Nigerian that is eligible; that is creative irrespective of the business area. You just need to be creative.
“Whether we like it or not, we live in a competitive environment.
“ The opportunities are there for those that are willing to harness the opportunities, of course they will be able to take the advantages in it.”
According to him, the fund only attracts three per cent interest from the beneficiaries.
He, therefore, called on youths to have creative mind and thinking to be able to contribute their quotas to the socio-economic growth and development of the society.
The Tide` recalls that the fund is part of the 2016 budgetary allocation of the state government to provide empowerment for the unemployed residents, including the youths.
In his address of welcome, Olulade said that youths were firebrands with numerous potentials and skills ready to positively affect the world.
He charged the participants to strive to be employers of labour rather than employment seekers.
“I am inspired by my humble background to start a youth-based foundation to bridge the gap between the youths and their aspirations. Youths should be seen as assets and not liabilities.
“This programme is one of the focal points of my foundation. The summit is one of the many opportunities that would come from Eleniyan Foundation for our youths.
“I charge you to be ready to hit the world. It is time for young people to shift from lack of job to creating something on their own,” he said.
According to him, if the youths can look at their innate talents, they will discover that they have something to offer the world.
The discussion session featured personalities such as Chief Dele Momodu, Desmond Elliot, Chioma Chukwuma and Kate Henshaw, among others.
The session, which was anchored by Ibrahim Owolabi, a young motivational speaker, exposed the youths to the experiences of the speakers and how they achieved greatness in their various chosen careers.

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11m Benefitted From $415m World Bank Supported CSDP  – FG

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The Federal Government has disclosed that 11 million Nigerians benefited from $415 million World Bank-supported Community and Social Development Project (CSDP) programme.
Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Hajiya Umar Farouq, disclosed this in an opening address during the close out ceremony of the CSDP programme.
According to Farouq, 11 million direct beneficiaries with an estimated 25 million indirect beneficiaries across 29 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) were reached between 2009 and 2021 when the CSDP programme was being implemented.
She also described the project as highly successful and highlighted sectors the project focused on including health, education, transportation, electrification, community housing, and others.
She said: “The Project became effective in 2009, has had two additional financing, all totaling USD415 million. In its over 11 years of existence, the CSDP has evolved into one of the strong pillars for the implementation of the Social Protection Programmes of the Federal Government under the supervision of my Ministry through the National Social Safety Nets Coordinating Office (NASSCO).
“The CSDP operates with the core principle of Community Driven Development (CDD) Approach.  This is a development paradigm that focuses on the needs of the poor and vulnerable and empowering them with development resources to address their peculiar needs.
“Using this unique approach, the CSDP has implemented micro projects in poor communities across the 543 Local Government Areas of 29 States and the Federal Capital Territory.
“This represents about 70 per cent of the total number of Local Governments in Nigeria.  The poor communities are identified specifically through the use of Poverty Maps agreed to by each participating State and FCT.
“The Project has made substantial impact on improving access of the poor and vulnerable to social and natural resources infrastructure across the benefiting communities.  The total number of beneficiaries of CSDP stands at 11 million direct beneficiaries across the 29 states, with estimated 25 million indirect beneficiaries.
“Specifically, the CSDP has achieved the following: Successful completion of 16,166 micro-projects in 5,664 communities and 934 vulnerable groups.  These micro-projects cut across eight sectors of intervention namely education, health, water, transportation, electrification, socio-economic, environment and community housing; 5,764 classrooms, 1,323 health centres and 4,442 water micro projects were constructed and or rehabilitated.

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Cooking Gas Use Campaign Begins In 12 States

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The Federal Government in collaboration with the Nigerian Energy Support Programme has kicked off the national sensitisation and awareness campaign for the use of Liquefied Petroleum Gas in Nigeria beginning with 12 pilot states.
The states include Sokoto, Katsina, Bauchi, Gombe, Enugu, Ebonyi, Delta, Bayelsa, Lagos, Ogun, Niger and the Federal Capital Territory.
The government said the campaign to ensure increased usage of LPG, popularly called cooking gas, was in line with its ‘Decade of Gas’ initiative, adding that its socioeconomic and health benefits far outweighed the use of kerosene and firewood.
Speaking at the inaugural campaign in Abuja, Tuesday the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, said there was no excuse for Nigeria not to be able to develop its gas sector considering the huge gas reserves in-country.
Osinbajo, who was represented by the Programme Manager, National LPG Expansion Plan, Office of the Vice President, Dayo Adeshina, said the use of LPG would help in cutting down gas flaring in Nigeria.
He said the government was working to ensure that Nigeria achieved the five million metric tons LPG consumption target, adding that efforts were being made to ensure the provision of cylinders at affordable rates to Nigerians.
“Our gas reserves in this country are enormous and we have every reason to develop the gas sector and ensure that our citizens use LPG,” the Vice President said.
He added, “The use of LPG is good for our health and has better socioeconomic benefits and this is in line with the ‘Decade of Gas’ initiative of government.”
Recently, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, said over 120 million Nigerians were experiencing energy poverty despite the huge natural gas resources across the country.
Participants at the awareness campaign also called for adequate penetration of LPG usage in Nigeria, as they pledged to support the government in achieving this target.

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Rail Transport Suffers 38% Decline In Q1 2021 – NBS

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Rail transportation suffered a 38 per cent, year-on-year average decline in passenger and cargo travel in the first quarter of the year 2021 (Q1’21).
The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) disclosed this yesterday in its Rail Transport Data for Q1’21, which  showed that passenger travel fell by 34.4 per cent, year-on-year, to 424,460 passengers   in Q1’21 from 647,055 passengers recorded in Q1’2020.
Similarly, cargo travel fell by 43.13 per cent, year-on-year, to 10,511 tons in Q1’21 from 18,484 recorded in Q1 2020.
The NBS stated: The rail transportation data for Q1 2021 reflected that a total of 424,460 passengers travelled via the rail system in Q1 2021 as against 647,055 passenger recorded in Q1 2020 and 134,817 in Q4 2020 representing -34.40 per cent decline year-on-year and +214.84 per cent growth QoQ respectively.
“Similarly, a total of 10,511 tons of volume of goods/cargo travelled via the rail system in Q1 2021 as against 18,484 recorded in Q1 2020 and 35,736 in Q4 2020 representing -43.13 per cent decline year-on-year and -70.59 per cent decline QoQ respectively.
Revenue generated from passengers in Q1 2021 was put at N892,467,526 as against N398,999,290 in Q4 2020. 
Similarly,revenue generated from goods/cargo in Q1 2021 was put at N26.19 million as against N82.57 million in Q4 2020.

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