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April 21, 2024
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Minister of Youth Development, Dr Jamila Ibrahim

FG partners NGO to create jobs for youths

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By Franca Ofili

The Federal Government is set to partner Mastercard Foundation Fund,
an NGO, to create job opportunities for youths, Dr Jamila Bio-Ibrahim, the Minister of Youth Development, said.

She made this known when the Grants, Finance, and Risk Management Officer of the NGO, Mr Abraham Ndambuki, paid her a courtesy visit
in Abuja.

She said that the partnership would focus on men, women, people living with disabilities and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).

She explained that participants for the partnership programme would be selected in clusters so that each participant can leverage on the advantage of others.

According to her, the approach will provide greater opportunities for young entrepreneurs to benefit from the fund.

She promised to provide the fund with database of young people who would be beneficiaries and would ensure that the businesses are sustainable and successful.

“We are also in the process of designing a framework for a Youth Development Bank, while the Youth Investment Fund is being reviewed.

“We want to improve and expand on this programme. We will operationalise the fund.

“We are open to ideas on how we can work together and collaborate on those government priority sectors,” she said.

Bio-Ibrahim added that the ministry was focusing on priority sectors such as Agriculture, Climate Adaption, Digital Economy,
Blue-economy, Mining, and Renewable Energy so as to establish young people in Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the main objective of the fund is to unlock enterprise growth, scale-up and sustain
the creation of dignified and fulfilling work opportunities for young Nigerians.

In his presentation, Ndambuki said that the programme had been implemented in 20 African countries and Nigeria is one of them.

He added that “we have engaged 35 different stakeholders, including government officials and the private sector, as
the programme is in its second phase. The first phase was completed last year, and it lasted for 10 years.

“It was valued at 50 million dollars, and we succeeded in disbursing the entire 50 million dollars across eight countries.

“The foundation has come with a second phase and increased the amount to 126 million dollars, equivalent to approximately
N194 billion in today’s rate.

“It will last for the next seven years, so we are now in the first year, which is the preliminary stage, and that is why we are
performing the visibility market research to identify and understand the Nigerian markets.”

According to him, Nigeria is the organisation’s central focus, adding that the fund’s presence in the country is to identify
key stakeholders to partner with, at the start the programme in April.(NAN)(www.nannew.ng)

Edited by Hadiza Mohammed-Aliyu

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