By: Alfred Saiki,
For his support and quest to improve the state of education, Governor Simon Bako Lalong of Plateau State has commissioned a computer laboratory at Government Science Technical College Bukuru.The project, which is a collaboration of Nigeria Employers Consultative Assembly and Industrial Training Fund/Technical Skills Development Project (NECA-ITF/TSDP), was commissioned by the Governor, after he had witnessed the graduation of 500 trainees of the National Industrial Skills Development Programme (NISDP) earlier at the Crest Hotel in Jos.
The Governor, while commissioning the Computer Laboratory, expressed the appreciation of his administration and the good people of Plateau to NECA and the ITF for the project, and looked forward to more collaborations in the future.
"I also wish to express the deepest appreciation and profound gratitude of the government and people of Plateau state to NECA and the Industrial Training Fund. We are indeed grateful. One good turn, it is said deserves another. Our doors shall be open to NECA and the ITF as we look forward to areas of collaboration for our mutual benefit", Governor Lalong said.
"Today, we are here to proudly identify with the good fortunes that have come out of the ITF-NECA collaborative effort on Technical Skills Development Project. It is interesting to know that not only has the ITF-NECA collaborative provided a befitting Computer Laboratory for our Technical College in Bukuru, it has also ensured the provision of Internet Connectivity and uninterrupted power supply through the installation of a sound proof 20KVA generator", the Governor added.
The Governor used the occasion to call on other Federal Government Agencies and Private Organizations operating in the state to compliment the efforts of his administration in providing quality education to the youths and equipping them with life-long skills for self-paid employment.
According to Lalong, "Government indeed cannot do it alone and we are open to beneficial partnership in this regard".
Lalong went on to advice and admonish the Principal, Staff and Students of Government Technical College Bukuru, to ensure that the facility is utilized for the purpose for which it was intended; that is the development of computer, and other related skills.
Earlier at the Crest Hotel venue of the graduation of 500 trainees of the ITF-NISDP for youths in Plateau state, Governor Simon Bako Lalong, who presented start up packs to the trainees, urged them to as well, train and employ others to take the burden of unemployment from the government.
Out of the 500 trainees in Plateau state, the Plateau state government sponsored 200, while the ITF sponsored 300.
On his part, the Director General of ITF, Sir Joseph N. Ari, while presenting the 500 trainees of the NISDP to the Governor, said, This programme is the result of the committed and relentless efforts of the Industrial Training Fund (ITF) in line with our mandate, and as our contribution to the Federal Governments policy of job/wealth creation and poverty reduction, by equipping as many youths as possible with skills for employability and entrepreneurship.
Sir Joseph Ari, went further to say, “Todays event marks a watershed since we commenced implementation of the NISDP as we have taken a step further from merely training and equipping the youths with knowledge and skills, to providing them with start-up packs to enable them set up their businesses and hit the ground running.
“The decision to provide the packs was informed by our tracking and monitoring of trainees of earlier phases, which revealed that those who were supported with the start-up packs, 90% of the trainees went on to be successful entrepreneurs, or even employers of labour. Conversely where they were not, they were not successful.”
The trainees in Plateau state were trained for 3 months in three trades namely; tailoring and fashion design, welding and fabrication and plumbing and pipe-fitting.
According to the ITF DG, over 11,000 trainees will benefit from the programme in this phase across the 36 states of the Federation and the FCT.