Chinese companies operating in Nigeria under the umbrella of China Chamber of Commerce in Nigeria have indicated willingness to assist in anyway possible to develop Nigerian youths to acquire relevant skills that would make them competitive in the unemployment market.
Speaking at a youth empowerment and vocational training programme organised by Cities and Regional Development Initiative in Abuja at the weekend, one of the representatives of the Chinese companies from China Civil Engineering Construction Company (CCECC) Mr Austin Qichenjun
Who spoke on behalf of his colleagues, stated that CCECC was always willing to develop the skills of its Nigerian workers and transfer technology to Nigerians.
He gave the example of the first Nigerian female train driver, who was trained by the CCECC observing that the company has help several of its staff to acquire useful skill in the development of Nigeria. He said that this necessitated their involvement in the project.
Also speaking at the event a management staff of China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) Mr. Zhuo Kun praised the organizers of the event and the emphasis on skill acquisition. He noted that his company China Harbour has been operating in Nigeria for over 25 years and was currently engaged in some key projects which includes the Keffi Abuja express way dualisation project and the Lekki deep sea port.
He said that his company would continue to support skill acquisition for Nigerians and the transfer of technology and would also work with the promoters of the project to ensure that those who have been trained are gainfully employed.
Earlier in her speech the FCT coordinator of CRDI Ms Joy Osaji said the programme became necessary as a result of the rising cases of youth unemployment in the country which she noted was fueling social vices and criminalities.
“it is not that there are no jobs, rather it is that many of our youths are unemployable because they lack useful skills to make them employable or self employed. To say I have gone to the university and hold a degree without hands on skill in any field is a recipe for unemployment. We must find a way to ensure there is synergy between relevant work place need and our training institutions in order to bridge this gap.
She said that her Organisation is working in this direction as a way of contributing its quota towards reducing youth unemployment by building a youth skill acquisition CENTRE in Abuja.
“it is part of our organisations mandate towards alleviating urban and rural poverty by equipping our youths who constitute over 60 percent of the population with relevant skills to make them employable, self employed and employers of labour themselves. What we are looking at is working with employers of labour to identify sellable and useful skill sets and then train our youths to aquire those skill sets and there after link them to employees for proper job placement or assist them to set up independently.
” It is the way to go, like I said it is not that there are no jobs the real issue is that those crying of unemployment don’t have the skill required to be gainfully employed or self employed. Our plan is to be able to train at least 100 youths in each of the six geopolitical zones on a yearly basis. We hope to start with Abuja before the end of the year”.
“We are looking forward to working with states governments and other stakeholders in this direction. We are already in partnership with one of the largest farm settlement in Gaate Nasarawa state, the Nigeria Farmers Group and Cooperative Society. In the FCT we have written to the FCT Minister and the Area Councils for assistance. We have also written to some big companies in Abuja to assist us to ensure we are able to put up the Centre,” she said.
“She identified some of the training programmes to include:
Building Technology, Air conditioning and refrigerating maintenance, mechanical services and maintenance, Electric/Electronics technology, mobile phone repairs, wood works and joinery, modern framing methods among others.