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Skilled manpower, not jobs is lacking in Nigeria- ITF

Nigeria’s Industrial Training Fund, ITF, says an assessment it carried out on six priority sectors of the economy, in collaboration with the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation, UNIDO, found that jobs are available, but no “requisite Nigerians to occupy” them.

Director-General of ITF, Mr Joseph Ari, stated this in Abuja while participating in a panel discussion at the 2022 Nigeria Employer’s Summit with the theme: “Private Sector as an Engine for National Development.”

Ari noted that employment challenges in the country are extensive and multifaceted, and require multiple strategies to curb them, adding that if Nigerian youths are empowered with skills, the country can export manpower and human capital to the rest of the world.

“If we engage this young population, they will go up and take over other climes of the world, and who knows a Nigerian can even become a Canadian Prime Minister someday,” he said.

The ITF Boss noted that the fund has been at the forefront of advocating the need for inclusion of Technical Vocational Education and Training, TVET, in the Nigerian educational curriculum.

“That is why the ITF has been working around the clock regarding the students industrial work experience, where you bridge the gap between the issue of theory and practice and the negative societal view of vocational skills or position and entrepreneurship,” he stated.

“Most Nigerians have grown to believe that it’s paper qualification that will take you to places but we have seen in other climes of the world that is not paper qualification more or less, you need skills to fix infrastructure,” he said.

Ari also called on stakeholders to come together and have a common purpose and a common ground to boost the private sector mainly through skills acquisition.

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