Home Local News ITF unveils strategic policy framework to re-engineer skills acquisition for sustainable development

ITF unveils strategic policy framework to re-engineer skills acquisition for sustainable development

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Industrial Training Fund(ITF) has formally unveiled it’s strategic policy direction for 2022 to 2025.

This according to the Director General of the Fund, Sir Joseph Ari is part of efforts to develop a vast pool of skilled manpower, sufficient to meet the needs of the public and private sectors of the nation’s economy.

Speaking at a media briefing on the ITF strategic policy direction, in Jos, the ITF Boss highlighted major challenges such as gross unemployment and high rate of poverty as having adverse effect on the nation.

Ari noted that “Although the Federal Government and, indeed, governments at all levels have implemented measures to tackle these challenges, it has become increasingly obvious that efforts have to be redoubled by all and sundry for us to effectively rid the country of these challenges.

“It is based on the above and in line with our mandate of coupled with resolutions at the recently concluded ITF National Skills Summit in Abuja that we found it imperative to review and refocus our strategies to address the above challenges and to meet the skills requirement of the nation in line with global best practices’.

“Unemployment in Nigeria today is at over 33% as over 23 million Nigerians that are desirous to work cannot find jobs, mostly because of the absence of requisite skills.

“Poverty is equally on the rise with some estimates placing the number of Nigerians that are living in poverty to be over 90 million. In the face of all these, our population has continued to soar with the World Bank estimating that Nigeria might hit 216 million by the end of this year.

“Equally worrisome is the spectre of the Out of School Children, which according to the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) is projected to be over 18.5 million” Ari said.

The new policy framework with the theme: Re-Engineering Skills for Sustainable Development has external and internal components according to the Fund.

It is believed that the new Policy framework if fully implemented will place ITF in better stead to fully implement its mandate and drive the achievement of Federal Government’s goals with particular reference to unemployment, poverty and their associated consequences.

“In arriving at our strategies, we considered the need to scale up our activities to address the soaring unemployment and other socio-economic challenges by leveraging on our three Es (Experience, Expertise and Expansive network), deployment of technology for wider coverage and more flexible service delivery.

“The internal components of the plan, which entail value reorientation, Industrial Development, Commercialization of ITF Facilities, Alternative Funding Window, Deployment and Promotion, Annual Budget Preparation and, Revenue Generation are intended to drive the external components of the new policy direction, which covers Standardization and Certification, Technical and Vocational Skills Training Programmes, Skills Intervention Programmes, Electronic and Virtual Learning and, Optimal Utilization of Skills Training Centres (STCs) and Vocational Wings (VWs)” he said.

Highly optimistic that Nigeria could replicate successes achieved in other countries by giving greater commitment to skills acquisition, the ITF Boss was of the view that the problem of perception that skills acquisition is the preserve of a section of our society has to be overcome.

He therefore called on Nigerians and other stakeholders to fully join hands with the Fund in providing and promoting skills acquisition to create jobs and wealth for sustainable development.

“The time has come for us to realise that Government alone cannot provide all the jobs that Nigerians desire. Therefore, acquiring a skill is vital to tackling our socio-economic challenges” he noted.

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