The Director- General of Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria, Dr Umaru Radda, on Thursday said the unemployment situation in the country has reached crisis level.
He said sustenance of the Young Business Owners in Nigeria was imperative for addressing the situation. Radda stated this in Awka, Anambra State during the flag off of empowerment of young business owners in Anambra State.
While urging them to make the best of the window of opportunity opened by SMEDAN, the Director-General who was represented by the Southeast Zonal Coordinator of the Agency, Mr. Levi Anyikwa, said the sustenance of the Young Business Owners in Nigeria initiative was imperative for addressing the unemployment situation in the country.
He said 80 beneficiaries had been selected for a pilot project from each of the States. He said,”The exercise is expected to cover all the States of the Federation in the next few years. Radda said the empowerment programme had two components; enterprise management training and payment for workspaces for one year.
The DG added that the two components of the programme were part of the solutions designed by the Agency to mitigate business failures recorded by young business owners.
He noted that the training would sharpen the business management skills of the beneficiaries which would increase their performance while the payment for workspaces would reduce their financial burden and free some funds for daily operations.
He said,”The target beneficiaries of the programme are young people between the ages of 20-45 years. The goal is to create new opportunities for enterprise growth for start-ups and for employment. “Selection criteria for beneficiaries include: technical capacities of the promoters, available raw materials, markets, available skills, access to appropriate technologies, among others
“Needs assessment was conducted which formed the basis for the design of the empowerment package. Furthermore, the delivery of a tailored Business Development Services package would include mentoring, linkages to markets and sources of equipment and provision of workspace.
“For sustainability of the programme, small business advisors would be assigned to each beneficiary/group to provide critical hand-holding supports to ensure the realization of the set goals prior to the Agencys project-exit.
Its quite disheartening that a Government that campaigned on the backs of creating 3 million jobs has ended up losing 3 million jobs and throwing more Nigerians into the employment market. Never in the history of Nigeria even under terrible economic sanctions during the Military except during Buhari's first coming in 1983 did Nigeria witness such a wicked government plunging millions into extreme poverty and rampant unemployment. This man Buhari is an Economic Disaster that should be voted out of Government. His constant blames of Pdp looting the treasury is turning into a comical Farce and exposes his ignorance more to the world that he does not know what he is doing economically.