President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday unveiled Nigeria Jubilee Fellows Programme designed to create new opportunities for 20,000 recent graduates annually.
Speaking during the ceremony at the State House, Abuja, Buhari said the scheme would provide an opportunity for mentors who were already engaged in various industries, gained relevant experience and built capacity over the years to provide mentorship and support for young Nigerians.
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He said the programme would build on other efforts of the government to support young Nigerians such as the N75bn youth fund in the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development, which was created to support young Nigerians in business or with business ideas, with N25bn released annually for three years.
He said: “Beyond the skills and work experience, we will be building a new culture of mentorship and guidance that can chart a new course for skills development and work experience in our country.
“We believe that as this programme creates new opportunities for 20,000 recent graduates annually, the beneficiaries will use the opportunities presented to them and maximize their 12 months of engagement.
“The jubilee programme will provide a pathway for young Nigerians to gain work experience in top tier organisations, gaining relevant skills and building the right networks for the future in various sectors including information and communications technology, financial services, trade, manufacturing, agriculture and agro-processing.”
The president, who encouraged all eligible Nigerians to apply for the jubilee programme, also urged private sector organizations to join by providing work placement opportunities, mentors and funding.
“I would like to say thank you to the United Nations Development Programme and the European Union for their support on this vital initiative,’’ he said
Buhari also said focus on job creation, consistency in policy and innovation stimulated a 5 per cent growth of the economy in the second quarter, 2021, which is the highest in six years.
He assured that Jubilee Fellows Programme would further consolidate on the success recorded.
He listed some of the key drivers of economic growth and diversification in the second quarter to include telecommunications, transportation, electricity, agriculture and manufacturing.
“We estimate that about 2 million people join our labour force annually. We continue to work with our partners to provide more opportunities to create jobs and the Nigeria Jubilee Fellows Programme in partnership with the United Nation’s Development Programme being one of such opportunities.”