By Tony Adibe
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship candidate in Enugu State for the 2023 General elections, Dr Peter Mbah has said that, if elected into office, his government will make basic skills acquisition mandatory for the youths in the state.
Dr Mbah said that the measure would help in making the young people more useful and productive to the state, thereby reducing or eradicating poverty and unemployment.
The PDP Governorship candidate spoke on Friday during the official opening of the Godfrey Okoye University, GOUNI-European Business Park and Centre for Practical Skills at the University permanent site Ugwuomu Nike Emene Enugu.
Mbah said: “Part of what we have proposed in Enugu State is to work with the Enugu State House of Assembly to have a law that makes it mandatory for young people to have skills so that there won’t be a child or anybody at the age of 18 without at least a minimum of one skill. So that we can transform our dominant assets which is largely our youths, until we transform them to a productive asset.”
He explained that if indeed, Enugu State was talking about attracting investors to the state, it means that they (investors) want to come and have the skills and labour domiciled where they are setting up their industries.
“So, part of the ways that we can de-risk investment flow to Enugu State is to work with centres like this because in our development plan, we are going to have a lot of skills acquisition centres for the purpose of vocational education across the various senatorial zones in the state. So, this is a welcome development, and it’s in line with our development plan,” he said.
Mbah described the GOUNI-European Business Park and Centre for Practical Skills as “a major breakthrough in our war against poverty because part of what we have identified that is the root cause of insecurity is unemployment,” adding that “this unemployment is happening because the youths that are supposed to gain employment lack the basic skills.”
He noted that what the Business Park and Centre for Practical Skills represented “is a centre where we train our young people in vocational and technical skills and by that we can readicate unemployment and chase hunger away from our society.”