By Ifeyinwa Ike
The Industrial Training Fund I(TF) has unveiled the Skill Acquisition Strategic Policy Direction for 2022 to 2025.
The Director General of ITF, Sir Joseph Ari disclosed this on Monday at a press briefing in Jos.
He said, the new policy framework with the theme: Re-Engineering Skills for Sustainable Development has external and internal components.
Ari explained that the Strategic Policy Direction is the third of such plans since he assumed office in 2016.
He said, “You will recall that on assumption of office in 2016, we unveiled the ITF Reviewed Vision: Strategies for Mandate Actualization*
“The plan, which was initially slated to terminate in 2022, was, however, reviewed in 2020 to address gaps that were identified in the course of its implementation, and for us to appropriately respond to the negative impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on our numerous clients”
“While it lasted, the plan enabled the ITF to aggressively address service challenges by computerising our operations, tackling infrastructural challenges to expand access to Nigerians desirous of acquiring skills, and generally address a gamut of other strictures that were impinging on our ability to effectively discharge our mandate for National economic growth and development and the general good of the Nigerian people”
He noted that unemployment in Nigeria today is over 33 precent as over 23 million Nigerians that are desirous to work cannot find jobs due to absence of requisite skills while most Nigerians live in poverty.
“Poverty is equally on the rise with some estimates placing the number of Nigerians that are living in poverty to be over 90 million”
“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”
“Although the Federal Government and governments at all levels have implemented measures to tackle these challenges” he disclosed.
Ari explained that in an effort to further address the problems of rising, poverty, unemployment and under-employment in the country, the Fund is re-engineering its skills intervention programmes through National Apprenticeship and Traineeship.
He also said that this will enable the Fund to realise its mandate of Developing a vast pool of skilled manpower sufficient to meet the needs of the public and private sectors.