The Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, yesterday, asked Nigerian youths to embrace the various skill acquisition programmes of the government in order to reduce restiveness and unemployment among them.
The development, the ministry noted, remained the only way designed by the Federal Government to pull 100million Nigerians, mostly youths, out of poverty in the country.
The Minister, Hajiya Sadiya Umar Farouk, spoke at the graduation of trainees drawn from the restive North-East zone of the country at the PAN Learning Centre, Kaduna, yesterday.
She also insisted that the government alone could not provide the teeming Nigerian youths with the needed white-collar jobs.
No fewer than 150 youths were drawn from the six states in the North-East – Borno, Yobe, Adamawa, Gombe, Bauchi – who had over the years been ravaged by the deadly activities of the Boko Haram insurgents, for the programme.
However, out of the 150 youths signed for the programme, 76 graduated.
The youths were trained in automobile repairs and were sponsored by the North-East Development Commission.
They had three months of rigorous training in various fields such as welding and fabrication, spraying and painting, vehicle maintenance, air conditioner maintenance as well as tyre and wheel balance.
Represented by her Technical Adviser in North-East, Group Captain Sadeeq Shehu (rtd), the minister expressed delight over the graduation and commended the North-East Development Commission for the initiative to train the youths in the automobile sector.
She also urged the youths to make good use of the skills acquired during the training in order to impact positively on other unemployed youths in the zone.
Shehu said, “First, she extends her congratulations to the graduands who have successfully followed the course of training which intended to upscale them to a good start in life. On behalf of the minister, I will enjoin you to please put this skill into use.
“There is no gainsaying that Nigeria is a country blessed with a large population, majority who are youths. The reality is that government cannot give every youth work. So, the best the government can do and an agency like North-East Development Commission is to make sure you are put in a position.
“While some will get government jobs, majority will have to go into private enterprise to ensure that they don’t only employ themselves but become generators of employment. That’s the reality of the situation.
“So, on that note, I must extend the appreciation of the honourable minister to NEDC for this laudable venture which thrives on the Federal Government plan to lift 100million people out of poverty.”
Earlier, the Chief Executive Officer of the NEDC, Alhaji Mohammed Alkali, had said the commission was considering building a mechanic village for the zone in order to take the restive youths in the area from the streets and make them invaluable to the society.
Giving the rationale behind the training, the NEDC boss said, the idea of the training was to reduce the large numbers of unemployed youths in the area following the 12 years destruction of the area by the Boko Haram insurgents
He said, “The North-East is ravaged by insurgency. The commission as you know is established to assist people back to normal life.
“One of the things we normally do is to see how we can empower displaced persons. Youths as you know form a large proposition of our population, especially in the North-East.
“The zone for the past 12 years had gone through a lot of destructions, schools have been distracted, the whole place destroyed. The number of the unemployed, especially the youths are increasing and the formal jobs either from the public or private sector are becoming minimal.
“So, people should be made to be self-employed. This is why we have chosen advocacy and other career young men can do. And we thought partnering with the PAN Learning Centre in training people in various aspects of technical motor repairs can help them make a living.”
Fubara Set To Create New Cities In Rivers
Rivers State Governor, Sir Siminalayi Fubara, has disclosed that arrangements are at advanced stages to achieve the development of new cities in the state that would help to decongest Port Harcourt and Obio/Akpor Local Government Areas.
Fubara said that the new cities would end the one city status of Rivers State and attract more investors into the state.
The governor stated this when he inspected the Greater Port Harcourt City Development Authority’s (GPHCDA) office and project sites in Ikwerre Local Government Area of the state.
Fubara said: “I can assure you that in our time, we might not achieve the dream of that big city in four years, but we will add a few things that would also help us in getting at that target.
“This is because, we are thinking of decongesting the present one city state that we have, which is Port Harcourt and Obio/Akpor. We are thinking of developing other parts of the state and our coming here is to see what the agency has been doing, what you have done already and what we can also do to make us achieve more new cities in our state.”
Fubara noted that despite the challenges the agency has been facing, there would be remarkable difference in what it would achieve within his tenure if the agency’s development ideals are aligned with those of the state government.
He, however, charged the agency to be self-sustaining by attracting investors as outlined by its establishment law.
Also speaking, the Sole Administrator of GPHCDA, Amb Desmond Akawor, said that since its establishment in 2009 by the Greater Port Harcourt Law, the agency has been slowed down in creating more cities because of its operational structure and the nature of the Public-Private Partnership it adopted.
Akawor, who is the Rivers State chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), explained that a new legal framework has been fine-tuned by the last GPHDA board, which the current management would present to the governor.
He said: “I am sure that with your directives, we will be able to reschedule some of the projects so that we can move forward with all of our partners, especially in the area of reforming or strengthening the public private partnership arrangements.”
Majority Leader Seeks Immortalisation Of Slain DPO
The Majority Leader of the Rivers State House of Assembly, Hon Edison Ehie, has appealed to the Police High Command to consider the immortalisation of the murdered Divisional Police Officer(DPO) in charge of Ahoada East Divisional Headquarters, SP Bako Angbashim, and commiserated with the State Commissioner of Police, CP Emeka Nwonyi; officers and men of the Police Force; and the family of the deceased over the brutal murder of the DPO.
Ehie, who made the appeal in a statement said the slain DPO deserves to be immortalised as he was a gallant, fearless and courageous police officer who distinguished himself in the fight against criminals and bandits in the State, adding that the calamitous killing and decapitation of the DPO by Mr Gift David Okpara Okpolowu, alias 2 Baba and his criminal gang is “an unprecedented low which shocked me beyond words and threw my constituents into an endless mourning circle”.
As the Honourable member representing Constituency 2 at the Rivers State House of Assembly and the incumbent Leader of the House, Ehie said he is using this medium to unreservedly condemn the senseless killing and decapitation of the DPO, and also to reiterate the call for the immediate apprehension and prosecution of his killers and everyone associated with the condemnable act.
Describing SP Angbashim as a gallant, fearless and courageous police officer who distinguished himself in the fight against criminals and bandits in the State, the lawmaker said the slain DPO was the one who single-handedly restored peace and order in Ogoniland.
“Even within the few months he spent in Ahoada East Local Government Area, the results of his gallantry were visible for all to see and appreciate.This is why his killing is not only calamitous and lamentable, but an affront to the government of the day in the State”, he said, adding that no government worths its salt will fold it’s arms and allow criminals and bandits to freely prey on its citizenry in order to make the State ungovernable.
On this score, therefore, Ehie thanked the Governor of the State, Sir SiminalayiFubara for prompt response to the situation which he said has already started yielding wonderful fruits, with some of the criminals associated with the killing of the DPO now under police detention and interrogation.
He also thanked and commend the officers and men of the Police Force as well as operatives of other sister security agencies in the State for their uniquely stellar efforts in fishing out the killers of the DPO.
The Majority Leader, however, called on all Ekpeye people, traditional rulers, chiefs, political elites and the general public to gratuitously assist and work with the police and other security agencies in ensuring that the killers of SP Angbashim are fished out, apprehended and made to face the full weight of the law, saying, “May our State never again witness this type of murderous orgy and life wastage”.
Ehie also appealed to the Police High Command in the State to consider the immortalisation of the slain DPO, while also appealing for meaningful and deserving support to his family and dependants.
While conveying his heart-felt condolences to the Nigerian Police, especially the officers and men of the Rivers State Police Command, the lawmaker prayed the Almighty God to grant them the fortitude to bear the monumental loss. He equally extended his deepest condolences to the family of the DPO, and prayed God to console them and heal their wounds.
Ehie further noted that “the biggest debt we collectively owe SP Bako Angbashim is to redress his killing by arresting his killers and subjecting them to justice.”
Appeal Court Upholds Banigo’s Senatorial Election Victory
The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja, yesterday, upheld the judgment of the Rivers State National Assembly Election Petition Tribunal that declared Dr. Ipalibo Harry Banigo of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) winner of the Rivers West Senatorial District Election held on February 25, 2023.
The Appellant Court, in her judgment, dismissed the appeal filed by the All Progressives Congress (APC) Senatorial Candidate, Hon. Asita O. Asita as “lacking in merit”.
In her reaction shortly after the verdict at the court premises, the Banigo hailed the judgment, describing it as an “incontrovertible victory of irreversible Senate seat”.
She expressed gratitude to the Almighty God, the leaders/stakeholders of the PDP and the entire members of the Rivers West Senatorial District for their unflinching support.
Banigo assured them of her loyalty and total commitment towards realising the tenets of her Kingdom Mandate.
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