The Federal Government has launched the Nigerian Youth Employment Action Plan (NIYEAP 2021-2024) as part of its sustained efforts to create more jobs, boost economic activities and reduce the incidence of banditry and other crimes in the country.
Specifically, the Plan aims at mobilizing the energies and capacities of the youth to reduce the risks posed by rising unemployment to national security.
The Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Mr. Sunday Dare, while speaking at the launch ceremony in Abuja, said the NIYEAP was part of the Buhari-led administration’s efforts to create an enabling environment that will create about 3.7 million jobs yearly.
He pointed out that creating jobs for youth should be considered as a desirable investment with positive benefits for the nation’s socio-economic spheres.
The minister said: “It is important to state that the economic and social consequences of youth unemployment transcend the youth group. It has also resulted in missed economic opportunities for the nation.
“This is because youth inclusion is about skilled human capital, social and economic stability, a vibrant and healthy labour force, which will also engender political stability and national growth and development”, Dare added.
The minister also explained that the Plan would focus on the 4Es, namely employability, entrepreneurship development, employment creation, and equality and rights, while also setting detailed actions required in support of employment creation for youths.
He further clarified: “The priority themes of the plan, known as the 4Es are, “further delineated into strategic lines of action under each theme, with emphasis on sectors that have high job creation potentials,” Dare explained.
”Sectors such as digital economy, rural economy, green economy and renewable energy sector, manufacturing, tourism, construction and services.
”The plan will also ensure the inclusion of partners across sectors and create a robust partnership base through which my ministry will ensure wider reach of youth employment programmes across the country.
”To ensure inclusion from the grassroots, the ministry of youth and sport will also be convening zonal inception workshops on the NIYEAP.
“Stakeholders from the 36 states and the federal capital territory will be included in the implementation of the plan”, the minister added.
It would be recalled that the House of Representatives had asked President Muhammadu Buhari to declare a state of emergency on the nation’s unemployment crisis.
For instance, in March this year, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) had reported that Nigeria’s unemployment rate rose to 33.3 percent in Q4, 2020 from 27.1 percent recorded in Q2, 2020.