•As Ondo Targets To Empower 100,000 Entrepreneurs In Four Years
Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu,SAN, on Friday officially flagged-off the Ondo State component of the Federal Government Extended Special Public Works Programme (ESPW) for 18,000 youths selected across the sunshine state.
The ESPW is an initiative of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration aimed at creating transient jobs for the unemployed in all the 774 local government areas of the county at 1,000 per local government area.
While commending President Muhammadu Buhari for approving the extension of the program to the state, Arakunrin Akeredolu noted that the program was necessary to mitigate the socio-economic impact of COVID-19 Pandemic by providing social safety nets at the lowest level of the economy.
“The compelling need to touch the lives of our youths made Mr. President to give approval to the National Directorate of Employment (NDE) to employ 774,000 unemployed persons under an Extended Special Public Works (ESPW).
“The programme is to last for three months with each participant receiving the sum of ₦20,000 per month. Let me thank the State Selection Committee for selecting participants from all the 18 Local Government Areas of the State.
“The committee has done a good job by embarking on sensitisation, awareness campaign and even commenced the programme across the State. The need for overall success of this laudable programme in our State cannot be overemphasised.”the Governor said.
Governor Akeredolu also disclosed his administration’s plan to empower no fewer than 100,000 entrepreneurs across the state in the next four years.
He said his administration is determined to create an entrepreneurial awakening in the minds of the people of the state, saying entrepreneurship is the catalyst for job creation.
“As a State, we have also designed our response to the looming increase in unemployment. During the first wave of the COVID-19 Pandemic, we foresaw that this challenge might increase. Our response to this has been to create the Ondo State Entrepreneurship Agency (ONDEA) as a vehicle to tackle unemployment through job creation.
“Entrepreneurship is the catalyst for job creation, as it is estimated that one new business employs at least two persons. Within four months of its operation, ONDEA has directly empowered over 2,000 Ondo State indigenes and residents across the 18 Local Government Areas with the entrepreneurship cycle fund, trainings, and business counseling which have assisted new businesses kick start their entrepreneurial journey.”Governor Akeredolu stated.
The honorable minister of state for Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Tayo Alasoadura, Acting Director-General, National Directorate of Employment (NDE) Mallam Abubakar Nuhu Fikpo, represented by Funmilayo Kila, and members of the state executive council attended the event held at the Gani Fawehinmi Freedom Arcade, Igbatoro road, Akure.