No fewer than 1.03 million youths have applied for 448,043 job training slots under the National Directorate of Employment (NDE) in the last five years, according to a study.
A report of the study, conducted by the Nigerian Institute of Social and Economic Research (NISER), Ibadan, indicated that the job training was conducted under the National Open Apprenticeship Scheme (NOAS) of the directorate.
A copy of the report was made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Ibadan on Sunday.
According to the study, unemployed youths and other stakeholders acknowledged the scheme to be capable of reducing joblessness.
The findings, which were among a series of studies called “NISER briefs’’, also indicated that the scheme had generated high interest among school leavers.
The findings showed that applications for the job training always outstripping available spaces in the study period, which spanned five years, up till 2011.
“Dominant industrial sectors, in which participants were engaged, include: Services (31.7 per cent), Manufacturing and Processing (13 per cent) and Electricity, Gas and Water (18 per cent).
Others are Building and Construction (13 per cent), Wholesale and Retail trade (11 per cent) and Agriculture (4.5 per cent),’’ the report stated.
According to the report, in 2011, about 874 persons graduated from the scheme with significant proportion, now in self-employment with impressive earnings and becoming employers of labour, especially those in agriculture sector.
“However, the scheme is not without problems militating against its effectiveness.
“Key problems include insufficient funds and logistics available to NDE, inadequate duration of training and equipment, lack of funds and space for apprentices to start their own business after graduation.’’
One of the recommendations of the researchers was that the Federal Government should step up funding and logistics for the NDE to enable it manage the NOAS effectively.
They also recommended a review of the training curriculum to take into consideration actual time needed to acquire enough skills in various trades offered under the scheme.
The researchers equally recommended the provision of adequate and modern equipment at NOAS training centres to ensure acquisition of practical skills in a fast changing world of technology.