Written by Sarah NEGEDU

Germany, Nigeria partner on skills acquisition

To stem the tide of illegal migration of young persons to Europe, the German government said it is arranging a skills acquisition intervention for 35,000 Nigerians through its Skills Development for Youth Employment programme.

The Deutche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit, a German government’s development programme in Nigeria, will be training select Nigerians in the construction and agriculture sector.

The €19million Skills Development for Youth Employment programme, is aimed at improving income and generating employment opportunities for Nigerian youths, as shortage of jobs is a major cause of migration to Europe and other industrialised countries.

Speaking at a stakeholders’ workshop held by the agency in partnership with the Ministry of Budget and National Planning, the Head of Skills Development for Youth Employment in Nigeria, Mr. Hans -Lidwig Brins, said one of the obstacles facing the development of employment potential sectors such as the agriculture and construction was the lack of adequate qualified manpower.

Brins said a major reason for this lies in the poor quality of curricula, teacher training and equipment in the technical vocational education and training system.

He said the programme will improve the employability of Nigerian youths in the identified sectors through technical and vocational education training which will based on the integrated employment approach.

The programme is funded by GIZ with €19.2million and focused on labour market relevance of the technical and vocational education training education system, which offers opportunities for youths amidst unemployment concerns in Nigeria.

He emphasised that the project was focused on making technical and vocational education demand driven.

“We need more government involvement and we need more involvement of the state and more involvement of the private sector.

“This is why we would need to go into public private dialogue with the states and municipal governments to actually support technological education.

“The idea is to capacitate different partners and institutions with regards to technical education and vocational training.

“Dealing only with the public sector won’t lead us to achieve the kind of result we want to achieve.

“So far, we are targeting 35,000 people in the selected states. We are aware of the issue of gender balance and this is why at least 30 percent of the beneficiaries will be women.”

He explained that the intervention was focusing on construction and the agricultural sectors because of their strategic place in the economy.

“The construction industry plays an important role in the economy and employment.

“Constructions activities cut across every aspect of the economy and will continue to expand with investments in infrastructure construction, manufacturing plans and the housing projects.

“It is one of the largest employers of labour and thus needs skilled workers.”

The project provides in -company training as well as supports formal training institutions in implementing labour market relevant trainings.

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