Reps probe SMEDAN, NDE, ITF, others

Reps Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila and Senate President Lawan

The House of Representatives has ordered an investigation into the federal government’s skill acquisition and related programmes, for which huge sums were reportedly received through budgetary allocations, as well as multilateral donations.

The House in a resolution on Thursday, agreed to set up an Ad hoc committee to investigate the concerned agencies and parastatals involved in the |mplementation of these skills acquisition and related programmes, and report back its findings.

This came following the adoption of a motion by Hon. Egoh Emmanuel, who recalled that the social investment programme and skills acquisition programme were parts of the sustainable tools for the eradication of unemployment amongst the youths; and also for the enhancement of human capital development and productivity in our country, introduced by the government.

“The federal government and multilateral donors in efforts to get Nigerians engaged in meaningful economic ventures had committed so much funds for the approval and implementation of skill acquisition programmes, seIf-reliance programmes and social investment safety nets in all the states of the federation through many of its agencies, including but not limited to industrial Training Fund (ITF), Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN), National Directorate of Employment (NDE), Amnesty Department of the presidency,” he said.

According to the lawmaker, adequate provisions have not been put in place to ensure the effective monitoring and implementation of these programmes as a greater proportion of our youths remain unemployed or unemployable and hence the increasing rate of poverty, insecurity, domestic violence and other criminal acts perpetrated daily in the country, as well as lack of financial transparency and prudence hampering the continuous support from multilateral donors.

He also recalled that “there have been several claims in the past by majority of the beneficiaries of these lofty programmes, that aside the crested vests and face caps given, have been unjustifiably denied facilities expected to be freely given to them after their trainings which is contrary to the terms and conditions for the approval of these programmes under the various agencies of the federal government.”

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