Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun, has said that his administration would focus on strengthening technical and vocational training as part of efforts to address unemployment in the State.
Vanguard reported that Governor Abiodun who stated this when he received the Accountant General of the Federation, Mrs. Oluwatoyin Madein in his office, at Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta, at the weekend said unemployment has become an issue that needed urgent attention to avoid its repercussions.
Abiodun noted that not every university graduate would desire to work for someone else, hence the need for technical training.
Strengthening the technical and vocational subsector of education, Prince Abiodun noted, would create employment opportunities and bring down the crime rate, pointing out that there is a connection between unemployment, literacy and crimes.
He said: “We have the highest number of educational institutions in Nigeria and that in itself presents another set of problems. When you are graduating so many students every year and if they are idle, then you have a problem and you need to begin to think ahead.
“To that extent, one of our focuses in the next four years is to strengthen our technical and vocational training believing that it is not everyone who has gone to the university would want to work for someone.
“We will match that university education with technical training and proper apprenticeship like we saw when I went with Mr President to India where apprenticeship is properly structured and those under training are paid not like here where you are learning a trade without being paid.
“There, they are properly trained, paid and certified so that when they leave, they are also provided with facility like loan that allows them to start up their trade and that account for the biggest backbone of their Small and Medium Scale Enterprise.”
The governor said his government has pioneered a Special Agro-Cargo Processing Zone that could provide employment opportunities to between 30,000 – 40,000 people and has also created industrial clusters in Remo, Ijebu-Ode and Magboro, just as a Dry Port is in the offing.
“We also have the Agbara industrial cluster which is the biggest industrial hub in sub-Saharan Africa and this has earned us the position of being the industrial capital of Nigeria. We are partnering with others to bring the much-needed socio-economic development to our people,” he added.
The governor said his administration’s vision when he assumed office, was fashioned on creating an enabling environment, using the Public Private Partnership to engender State and individual prosperity, emphasizing that critical sectors of the economy like good roads, power, educational and healthcare facilities as well as housing, have been provided.
While maintaining that significant progress has been made by imparting on every sector of the State, as encapsulated in his administration’s development agenda, the State helmsman called for a synergy with the AGF’s office to continue to implement the “Building Our Future Together” agenda, as government would not do it alone.
He congratulated Mrs. Madein for her appointment saying, “I must say that we are proud of you. Your antecedent preceded you. Your appointment was clearly by merit. You contested with several others and you emerged the best. You are a good ambassador of women folks because this job is not an exclusive job for women. It is a job that both men and women competed for.
“It is our prayers that the Almighty God will grant you the grace to make the best out of it and you will continue to make your family and your state proud.”
Speaking earlier, Mrs. Oluwatoyin Madein, lauded the present administration for its efforts at attracting more investors into the State, noting with delight the giant strides the State is making in the area of industrialization.
Mrs Madein commended the state government for creating an enabling environment for businesses to thrive and for making the provision of infrastructure like good road network, its priority.
She said that Ogun has become home for those who work in Lagos because of the proactiveness of the government in providing needed infrastructure, including security of lives and property.
Mrs Madein expressed delight that forests are disappearing in the state and being replaced with industries, adding that Ogun is a state one can look forward to for development outside Lagos State