Talent and creativity are Nigerias greatest asset, the youths
hopes and aspirations will shape our nations future.
Today, two in three Nigerians are younger than 25. Nearly half have not yet celebrated their 15th birthday. More than 50 million are of school-going age. Their talents and creativity are Nigerias greatest asset, and their hopes and aspirations will shape our nations future. Yet they cannot succeed without state support.
Along their journey, they need schools that teach them to read, write, and calculate, and to think critically, creatively, and without fear. They need food and shelter, electricity to do their homework, and internet access to understand and engage with the wider world. They need jobs once they leave school and they need opportunities to move on and up once they enter the workforce. Most of all, they need the confidence that they can make a difference, and they need a say on the direction the country is taking. Whether they grow up in a village or in a city, in the North-East or in the South-West, as boys or girls, rich or poor, Nigerian youth share common dreams: they want to learn and know, they want to work and succeed, they want to support their families and settle down to raise their own children. They dream of the good life. Yet for too many, growing up is painful, and few get the fair chances everyone deserves. This will CHANGE.
Primary schools should create opportunity for all. Only it does not.
The youngest school leavers drop out of the educational system at the age of 11 or 12, usually because they receive poor schooling; because no one helps them keep up with the curriculum; because their families are too poor to support them; or because they or their families see no value in further education. Those who find jobs typically end up as housemaids or boys; as Almajiris, hawkers, or petty traders; in craft-related apprenticeships; or as farmhands. Most secondary school leavers lack general competencies, and skills. Few have what it takes to succeed in further education; most also enter the world of work unprepared. There are few apprenticeships and vocational training centres, and without marketable skills, most end up in farming, petty trading, or other unfulfilling jobs that offer a few career prospects. A good number dream of a lucky break. Yet most are at the wrong place, at the wrong time.
Under a government led by Atiku Abubakar, we will develop systems that create multiple paths of career development for every young child
Also opportunities for personal development and ensure that it becomes unnecessary to flee the villages to get a decent life and fulfil their aspiration.
The Presidency through the Federal Ministry of Education (FME) will support households that keep their children in the school system and use ‘educational vouchers’ to relieve household budgets and raise education standards.
The Voice We Deserve
Within one year, the Federal Government will:
Create incentives for the creation of general skills and micro-entrepreneurship training centres by State and Local governments, private investors and development partners and through the Federal Ministry of Trade and Investment (FMTI) will develop a voucher and matching fund system to encourage public and private entities to provide:
Short courses in computing, book-keeping and business management.
Build your business' and 'run your business' workshops and 'start-up' schools coaching, guidance, and counseling.
Encourage the private sector to narrow skills gaps:
- The Presidency through the Federal Ministry of Trade and Investment (FMTI) will reward on the job training and apprenticeship schemes by:
- Identifying best practices for linking career advancement (promotion, bonuses etc) to training-related performance – and offering compliant firms preferred bidder status in public tenders
- Creating tax incentives to develop onsite (firm, industrial park) training facilities organizations.
Hosting an annual gala event for the most successful skills transfer organizations.
Streamlining regulations to reduce employers’ training costs
- Sponsoring annual rewards for local training champions through the Federal Ministry of Finance and Federal Ministry of Trade and Investment will encourage businesses to lead vocational training efforts by rewarding small and medium sized businesses that offer apprenticeships with:
- Social security contribution waivers for the 3-6 months long apprenticeship
- Social security contributions reductions for apprentices hired (for at least 6 months) after their apprenticeship
- Trade organisations that back or establish vocational training centres with:
- Start-up grants and tax exemptions
- Performance based payments for each certified plumber, carpenter, brick layer, mechanic, etc. that leaves the centre and finds a job or sets up his or her own microenterprise
Encourage businesses to re-train unskilled workers
- Initiatives waiving federal taxes of the most effective training centres through the Federal Ministry of Finance and Federal Ministry of Trade and Investment will:
- Encourage private entities (charities, trade associations, etc.) to offer ‘walk in training’ courses held by skilled craftsmen, experienced petty traders.
- Monitoring participants’ careers
Within four years, the Federal Government will:
The Presidency through the Federal Ministry of Agriculture (FMA) will boost yields and agricultural incomes – and create incentives to re-build centres of expertise by:
- Invest in skills and location-specific know how
- Offering farmers who register their businesses non-transferrable and non-refundable ‘growth vouchers’ for off-season short courses in crop management, animal husbandry etc. which can be used at the recipients’ preferred government, community, or privately run training institution.
Under a government led by Atiku Abubakar, we will no longer tolerate:
- An educational system that does not convey the competencies and skills the labour market demands.
- A system where scarcity leads to fierce competition and nepotism and often captive employment opportunities
- A system where nepotism trumps qualifications, commitment, and achievements.
Graduates find that overcrowded public universities are hard to get into; that many of the private alternatives promise and cost more than they deliver; that there are few paid jobs for those who get their degrees; and that relationships trump qualifications even when it comes to securing interviews and entry positions.
Many find that they lack bankable competencies and skills, and that they know too little about the jobs market, business opportunities, and business plans; and many end up trying to copy what others have done with some success. The most promising, who enter the National Youth Service, find that their engagement and ideas are not appreciated, and many feel the educational system has sapped their courage to demand a fair deal. Those fortunate enough to have a job find that, unless they have the right connections, there are few opportunities to move on or up.
Under a government led by Atiku Abubakar, we will expand continuous learning and training opportunities with commensurate certification that ensures comparative standards within the global knowledge economy.
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