Niger Delta ministry mulls job creation initiative in region
PANDEF warns against neglect
The Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Pastor Usani Uguru Usani, has disclosed a plan to create jobs in the region.He made the disclosure in Calabar when the Presidential Initiative on Economic Diversification and Industrialisation of the Niger Delta visited Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River State.
The minister, who was in the state for a summit, said jobs would be created to develop the region.He said: “The target of the Federal Government, particularly in agriculture and manufacturing is to create jobs and set agenda for the development of the region.”
The minister said the decision was based on the fact that the capacities of government agencies were too limited to absorb the growing labour demands.
According to Usani, insecurity drives away investors, which is caused mainly by joblessness, adding that when people are engaged productively through job creation, there would be peace for the sustainable development of the states in the region.
He pointed out that the Federal Government was determined to make the initiative succeed in Cross River State through collaboration with the state government, financial institutions and other willing investors.
“Cross River has many investment opportunities and the Federal Government is ready to give maximum support to tap into the resources,” he said.Ayade assured the team of the state government’s commitment to giving the initiative the necessary support for its success.
The governor explained that the state was ready to welcome investors to diversify its resources, as the state has hydrocarbon resources, solid minerals and good soil for agriculture.
Meanwhile, the Pan Niger Delta Forum has urged the Federal Government to address the economic stagnation, unemployment and backwardness in the region.
PANDF made the appeal yesterday at a briefing ahead of its General Assembly slated for Thursday this week in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital.
The state’s leader of the elders’ forum, Alabo Graham Douglas, said the Federal Government must take advantage of the relative peace in the oil-rich region to urgently listen to the agitation of the area.
Douglas, who was the former Minister of Labour, pleaded with the agitators to be patient with the elders, as they marshal out ways of ensuing better life for the youths.
Also, a member of the forum, Anabs Sara-Iglesias, said PANDEF was determined to make the region more secure for investors, adding that dialogue remains the best tool to actualise the demands.
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