A three-day enterpreneurship training programme for over 360 youths in Ondo State commenced in Akure, the state capital, today.
The State Manager of SMEDAN, Mr Biodun Ayedun, said at the opening ceremony that after the training, participants would be able to access loans between N1m and N10 million at five percent interest rate, payable after 18 months.
The programme is the outcome of the three-way partnership involving the State Government, the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) and Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
Governor OluwarotimiAkeredolu, SAN, said that one of the core values of his administration is human capital development, being the foundation of socio-economic growth of the state.
The governor, who was represented by his deputy, Hon. Agboola Ajayi, noted that over four million youths are competing for one million jobs. He added: “As our administration is committed to sustainable youth empowerment, this three-day capacity building training is intended to unlock and re-invent your creative potential and provide another opportunity for you to either start or scale up your existing businesses.
“We cannot pretend to be unaware of the teething challenges confronting up and coming young entrepreneurs,notably the inability to access the initial capital outlay,” he added.
Akeredolu disclosed that the agricultural value chain business remains a significant aspect of his government’s plan to create jobs for unemployed youths and to grow the state economy. He revealed that the business had engaged over 18,000 youths,with social protection and reinvestment programmes had currently engaged about 50,000 youths through its various components.
Commissioner for Youth and Sport Development, Mr Dotun Owanikin, said the training programme was an indicatjon of the strong commitment of the governor towards youths in the state. According to him, the training will make the youths self-reliant and also empowering them to ensure a sustainable employment opportunities in the state.
Owanikin revealed that each local government has a minimum of 20 youths, saying: ” what we are trying to do here is to start a chain of employment for the youths in the state.”
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