By Omowumi Samuel
The Nigerian government has called on Education stakeholders to strengthen the Technical, Vocational, Education and Training (TVET) on youth unemployment, promote entrepreneurship, foster innovation and support sustainable economic growth.
The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Education, David Adejo, made the appeal in Abuja at the Validation Workshop for the Better Education for Africa’s Rise (BEAR III).
Adejo, represented by the Director, Education Planning, Research and Development in the ministry, Mr Adeye Adeleye, said training of young minds in technical skills would nurture a workforce that could adapt to emerging industries and technologies.
He said this would also contribute to Africa’s rise on the global stage.
”It is important that we remind ourselves that skills are pivotal to the social economic development of the nation.
”The world is in need of skillful employee and Nigerian skilled workers must not be left behind hence the need to revitalise, reform and expand the provision of skills and vocations towards an all-inclusive and holistic approach to life skills learning,” he noted.
Adejo, therefore, said the validation of BEAR III, with a focus on TVET was a call to invest in the potential of youth, to cultivate a skilled workforce that would lead Africa’s rise in global arena.
Also, the Officer-in-Charge, UNESCO Regional Office, Abuja, Dimitri Sanga, said BEAR III project offered better employment opportunities to youth in sub-Saharan Africa and support the economies of these countries by addressing the evolving needs of the labour market.
Sanga, represented by Albert Mendy, said the project focused on strengthening and making more resilient the TVET system of the beneficiary countries in West Africa, which are Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone.
”During the workshop, we examined the relevance and coherence of the project formulation document in relation to the objectives set, the needs identified and the expectations of the stakeholders.
”We also clarified the roles and responsibilities of the various stakeholders in implementing the project and foster their commitment and support,” he added.
Sanga stated that through the BEAR III project, UNESCO would contribute to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and more specifically the goals 4 and 8.
He said this goals focused respectively on “ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education for all” and “promoting sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all”.
Meanwhile, the Director, Technology and Science Education in the ministry, Grace Jakko, said the project would encourage TVET to be more relevant to the needs of the economy and labour market.
Represented by Mrs Gbemi Olaniyan, a Deputy Director in the ministry, said the project if harnessed would strengthen TVET system in the pilot stage of Kano, Ebonyi and Ogun and the country at large.
The BEAR III is a joint initiative of UNESCO and the Republic of Korea.T
The objective is to give young people in the four beneficiary countries a better chance to access decent employment and generate self-employment of which Nigeria is fortunate to be one of them.