July, 12 2022.
Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Hon. Sunday Dare has stated that his administration will continue to pay attention of the affairs of the country’s youth in equal measure as it gives to sports in Nigeria.
Since the start of his tenure, Hon. Sunday Dare has initiated several programmes and schemes to support the dreams and aspirations of youth in Nigeria, recognizing that the youth remains the livewire of the country.
Dare said “when I assumed office, I realized that there was a gap that needed to be filled in the level of attention given to the youth in relation to sports. We had to develop a template for youth development and we swung into action”.
“We secured funds in the tune of 75 Billion Naira with approval from the Federal Government for the disbursement of 25 Billion Naira per year for the National Youth Investment Fund (NYIF). Over 3,000 youth across the country have benefitted from this scheme and disbursement is still ongoing and it is all in a bid to help provide an entrepreneurship base for our young, vibrant population. The concept behind the building of an entrepreneurial spirit was to facilitate economic prosperity amongst that age bracket.”
Working towards wealth creation, we leveraged on ICT to further build our digital economic profile, through the organizing of marketable digital skills programmes. We went on to put up scholarship schemes, as well.”
One of the achievements of Sunday Dare as the Youth Minister was the organizing and staging of the country’s first ever National Youth Convention, which was held in Abuja. It was a platform that brought the youth from all over Nigeria to one room and brainstorm on issue that concerned the population. The opportunity gave the youth a vista into their role as the future of the country and the need for youth participation in leadership.
On the area of employment, the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development responded to the employment gap in the country by developing the National Youth Policy (NYP), Nigerian Youth Employment Action Plan (NIYEAP), as well as the National Youth Employment Template and the DEEL initiative.
Speaking on the acronym FEEL, which means, Digital Employability Entrepreneurship and Leadership, Sunday Dare said “the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development under my watch launched DEEL to give Nigerian youth a comparative advantage and a competitive edge in the global employment demand and supply”.
The DEEL initiative has equipped 200,000 youth with digital skills - basic, intermediate and advanced skills in areas such as Web design and management, Artificial Intelligence, Cloud Computing etc. Nigeria's e-commerce spending stands at $12b and is projected to reach $75b in 3 years.
The Ministry working closely with the Government led by President Muhammadu Buhari increased the monthly allowance of Corps Member under the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) from 19,800 Naira to 33,000 Naira.
Bi-lateral relationships have been signed in the area of youth development for the benefits of the Nigerian youth with countries like South Africa, Spain, Rwanda, Portugal. Japan, Turkey etc. These relationships have opened the doors of opportunities for Nigerian youths in different sectors such as tech, education, arts, entertainment, sports etc.
Within the country MoUs have been signed with organizations such as Google, Konga and a host of others all in a bid to open more doors for the youth.
Conclusively, the Federal Government through the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development has pledged its commitment to youth development-focused initiatives, so as to fully harness the potentials of the youth towards achieving rapid socio-economic growth.