Nigeria’s Federal Executive Council (FEC) on Wednesday in Abuja, approved N807 million for the training of 2,700 non-militant Niger Delta youths in ICT and agriculture.
Dr Reuben Abati, the Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to President Goodluck Jonathan, told State House correspondents after the weekly FEC meeting that 500 non-militant youths would be trained in ICT at the cost of N258 million.
He said N549 million would be spent on the training of another batch of 2,200 youths in agriculture.
“From the Ministry of Niger Delta, two Memos were presented, contract was approved for the training of 500 non-militant Niger Delta region youths in the area of ICT, youth empowerment and also for the training of 2,200 non-militant Niger Delta youths in agriculture.
“And both of these of course are focused on the training and empowerment of Niger Delta youths to develop their skills, to empower them and also provide employment opportunities, particularly after the training and to provide opportunities for these young men and women of the Niger Delta to continue to develop their potentials.“
According to Abati, the contract for the training of the 2,200 Niger Delta youths in agriculture is a continuation of an existing programme.
He said the programme would be implemented by the Ministry of Niger Delta in partnership with the Federal Ministry of Agriculture.
Also commenting on the programme, the Minister of State for Niger Delta, Mr Darius Ishaku, said the objective of the training was to engage the youth in viable business ventures.
He, therefore, expressed the hope that the programmes would reduce the rate of unemployment and rural-urban migration in the Niger Delta.
Ishaku dismissed the insinuation that the Niger Delta youths being trained by his ministry were responsible for the reported cases of social unrest in the region.
The Minister attributed the decreasing cases of kidnapping in the Niger Delta region to the various training programmes embarked upon by the Ministry for youths in the region.