The International Labour Organisation has pledged its support to the incumbent administration to deliver over two million digital jobs to reduce the unemployment rate in the country.
The ILO Country Director for Nigeria, Ghana, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, Vanessa Phala, stated this at the World Youth Skills Day in Abuja on Friday.
Speaking on the theme, ‘Empowering Youth for a Sustainable Future: Building Skills for Tomorrow’, Phala noted that the digital economy has become an integral part of Nigerians’ daily lives, shaping the industrial sector and creating more opportunities.
The country’s director stressed that Nigeria has a youthful population, hence the need for them to be equipped with the right skills to succeed in the digital world.
She noted, “Today, we gather to celebrate the remarkable potential of our young people and to emphasize the critical role of skills development in preparing them for the challenges and opportunities of the 21st century.
“We realised that the future is now and skills are needed. It is well known that Nigeria has a youth population with a vibrant energy that stands for the principle of transformative progression.
“However, to unlock Nigerian youths’ potential, we must invest in them, equip them with the right skills and create an enabling environment that enriches their talents.”
Speaking further, Phala said that “The ILO has supported the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development to develop the Nigerian Youth Development Action Plan with a focus on entrepreneurship among others.
“To fulfill the potential of this digital era, we must ensure that our young people are not only technologically trained but must possess critical thinking, problem-solving, and adaptability skills to strive in a changing world.
“The ILO is supporting the government in this digital transformation agenda and will continue to support the new government to deliver on the promises of creating over 2 million jobs in the digital economy.”
In his opening address, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, George Akume, said young people’s potential should be harnessed to catalyse transformation.
Akume, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Political and Economic Affairs Office, OSGF, Nko Esuabana stated “Together, we have embarked on a collective endeavor to reach the skill gap and empower our youths in the green, digital and creative economy.
“The dialogue lies not only in addressing the challenges facing our young ones today but also in harnessing their potentials as catalysts for transformational change.”