PAULETTE ORJIME- Abuja
CENTRAL Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has expressed willingness to provide further opportunities of self-employment for Corps members through its skill acquisition training.
CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, gave the assurance recently in Abuja when the Director-General of the National Youth Service Corps, Brigadier General Shuaibu Ibrahim paid him a courtesy visit in his office.
Emefiele, who stressed the need for sustained efforts at reducing the rate of unemployment, said interested Corps members could attend the CBN entrepreneurship training centres to acquire skills in various vocational areas for economic survival at the end of the National Service instead of waiting for white collar jobs.
Such arrangement, he added, would empower Corps members for the establishment of small and medium enterprises, and contribute to the growth of the economy.
The CBN Governor explained that upon completion of training, beneficiaries would benefit in kind from working tools and support for renting of business offices or workshops, the cumulative value of which represents a loan that would be repaid within seven years with a two-year moratorium.
He recalled that an earlier programme, the Youth Entrepreneurship Development Programme, was launched by the Bank in 2016 to serve as a springboard for empowerment of Corps members and other youths for self-employment and wealth creation.
Emefiele assured that the CBN National Microfinance Bank would also support interested Corps members in business financing.
He used the occasion to advocate patronage of the Nigerian textile industry, which he described as the largest employer of labour in the country in the 1990s, as a way of providing more jobs for Nigerians and further developing the economy.
Earlier, the Director-General of NYSC, Brigadier General Shuaibu Ibrahim, praised the CBN for its development finance programmes, noting that the Scheme enjoyed robust collaboration with the Bank in the area of empowerment of Corps entrepreneurs.
Shuaibu said NYSC remained determined to complement the efforts of the Federal Government in stemming the tide of youth unemployment; hence the reinvigoration of the Scheme’s Skill Acquisition and Entrepreneurship Development programme remained one of the top priorities of his administration.
He therefore sought the support of CBN for the Scheme through the provision of more zonal skills acquisition centres of the type constructed and equipped for the North East in Gombe with the support of Access Bank.
The Director-General also requested the support of the CBN in the provision of modern equipment for the NYSC farms located in various parts of the country and the Scheme’s garment factories, which all served as training grounds for Corps members.
Shuaibu congratulated the CBN Governor on his reappointment, and wished him success in the discharge of his responsibilities.
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