ABUJA (ILO News): On 22 March 2018, the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development (FMYSD), in collaboration with the International Labour Organization (ILO), the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the Spanish Agency for International Development, organized a validation meeting for the new Nigerian Youth Employment Action Plan (NIYEAP) in Abuja.
The meeting was attended by representatives of key stakeholders including the Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, the National Directorate of Employment, the National Youth Service Corps, the Citizenship and Leadership Centre, the National Social Investment Office, the Central Bank of Nigeria, UNIDO and other organizations.
Mr. Dennis Zulu, Director of the ILO- Country Office Abuja, conveyed welcoming remarks and reiterated ILO’s long-standing commitment to promoting decent work for youth. He thanked the Ministry for organizing the meeting and looked forward to continued collaboration in addressing youth employment issues in Nigeria.
The Honorable Minister, Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development, Mr. Barrister Solomon Dalung, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Mr. Adesola Olusade, stated that the first Youth Employment Action Plan (2009-2011) was developed as a strategy to solve the youth employment challenge in Nigeria. The revised Action Plan for the period 2018-2020 placed emphasis on Entrepreneurship, Employability, Employment Creation and Equal Opportunities. Mr. Olusade further stated that unemployment could lead to frustration, poverty, youth restiveness, depression and mental health problems. He noted that factors limiting the effectiveness of youth employment initiatives included a lack of coordination which often lead to duplication of efforts and limited opportunities for youth to access resources for self-employment after vocational skills training. The Permanent Secretary acknowledged ILO’s support in tackling youth employment.
Following the presentation of the new Youth Employment Action Plan, participants engaged in group work to discuss and validate proposed actions around employability, entrepreneurship, employment creation and equal opportunities.