Ghanaian youth have been encouraged to take advantage of employable skills training programmes, rolled out by the government, to improve their economic situation.

Mr. Pius Enam Hadzie, Deputy Youth and Sports Minister, said the goal of these programmes including the National Entrepreneurship and Innovation Plan (NEIP), was to provide job opportunities for them to make their lives meaningful to the society.

The NEIP, established with seed money of GH?100 million, has been designed to train unemployed youth in nail manufacturing, automobile repair and servicing, steel fabrication, concrete blocks manufacturing, toilet paper and sanitary napkins production.

Speaking at a ceremony held in Kumasi to mark this year’s “African Youth Day”, Mr. Hadzie said employment creation was at the heart and thinking of the government’s economic policies.

This was because about 50 per cent of the nation’s population was within the “youth bracket” and he indicated that, high level of joblessness among them was a major development challenge.

“Any country with such a strong youth population base will have to work harder to meet the aspirations of the people”, he added.

The event was organized by the National Youth Authority (NYA) under the theme “Harnessing the demographic dividend through investment in the youth”.

The day has been set aside to highlight youth development issues – unemployment, crime, illiteracy and ignorance, teenage pregnancy and drug abuse.

The Deputy Minister announced that an amount of GH?78.7 million had been allocated to NYA to carry out its programmes and activities.

Mr. George Orwell Amponsah, acting Ashanti Regional Director of the Authority said the youth in the region, were being organized into productive ventures and applauded the government’s drive towards equipping them with skills that would make them employable.

The decision to assist at least 300 young people in every region to acquire skills in online marketing programming was both refreshing and a right step.

The youth in the continent, he noted, had become increasingly vulnerable to organized crimes – human trafficking, forced labour and domestic servitude due to poverty, illiteracy and inadequate social interventions to protect their interests.

“As we commemorate this all important Day, the NYA is urging stakeholders to critically look at these problems and come together to address them in the interest of everybody.”
GNA/Newsghana.com.gh

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