The Kaduna State government, in collaboration with New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), has trained over 2,000 youths from the 23 local government areas in the state on becoming agriculture entrepreneurs.
The Director of Youth Development, Kaduna State Ministry of Human Services and Social Development, Hajiya Maryam Muazu disclosed this at a policy dialogue on Prevention of Violent Extremism- Centered Policy Brief Dissemination Roundtable organised in Kaduna by ActionAid Nigeria and Global Peace Development.
“We are waiting for a response from NEPAD for youth to get land from the government and farm to become agriculture entrepreneurs. The programme is about reducing poverty and unemployment. We are looking at least 2,000 youth; they might even be above that number.
“We are among the 16 pilot states slated for that programme. Kaduna State government has provided the enabling environment; youth have been trained from the 23 LGAs across the three senatorial zones. Their names have been given to NEPAD, we are expecting them to go through the list, what we are waiting for is the grants,” she said.
The Resilient Programme Coordinator, ActionAid Nigeria, Anicetus Atakpu, said, “95 per cent of every crime or violence that took place in Nigeria is perpetrated by the youth. All the conflicts, even banditry, kidnapping carried out mostly by youth between 16-30 years mainly due to unemployment, perceived marginalisation and other factors.”
The Project Officer, Kaduna, ActionAid Nigeria, Mr. Cornelius Shija said the 50 participants for the dialogue were drawn from Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), youth groups, Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDA’s) as well as security agencies.