Lagos State partners UNDP to tackle unemployment

Akintunde Oyebode

Targets 10,000 jobs for women, youths
As part of efforts to reduce the high rate of unemployment, the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF) in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has earmarked $4 million to train about 10,000 women and youths on skills acquisition across the state.

While signing the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the UNDP, the Executive Secretary of LSETF, Akintunde Oyebode, who said the state has suffered specific skills-gap employability problem, emphasised the need to break the barriers to investments and help businesses to grow.

He stated that about N1.6 billion or 60 per cent counterpart funding of the project had already been disbursed for operations.

He said that both organisations were already negotiating with other institutions and vocational training centers to ensure their curriculum meet the requirements for a sustainable human development and employment opportunities in the country.

“We are signing this partnership with UNDP to first improve the outcomes on employability across certain critical sectors in Lagos like tourism, healthcare, construction and hospitality.

“We lack skilled labour in these areas. We can improve the learning outcome specifically, at this stage on the technical and vocational curriculum. It is a significant opportunity to capitalise the economy of Lagos state.

“We expect that this programme will get 10,000 people of Lagos into functional and sustainable jobs,” he added.

Speaking, Deputy UNDP Country Director of programmes, Mandisa Mashologu said the major concern was to support the state’s employability project and to tackle some of the critical development issues that could have a huge impact in the state.

She said that UNDP was partnering with some of the 25 vocational centres in Lagos on skills acquisition in manufacturing, healthcare and tourism.

Mashologu expressed hopes that the partnership will serve as a model of how Nigeria can address unemployment issues in areas of inclusive growth, governance and the environment.

“We are targeting youths within the age bracket of 18 to 35years who are skilled and unskilled; we are also ensuring that we have a good representation of women in the project,” she stated.



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