By Albert Akota
The Minister of Youth Development, Mr. Boni Haruna has reiterated the strong commitment of the Federal Government under President Goodluck Jonathan to the full implementation of the Junior Professional Officers (JPO) Programme, citing numerous benefits that would accrue to the beneficiaries and the country’s developmental efforts.
Haruna disclosed this during the meeting held with officials of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) JPO Service Centre, in Copenhagen, Denmark recently during discussion on facilitating the proactive implementation of the programme.
The Minister, while expressing confidence on the value of the programme, stated that ‘Nigeria’s participation in the JPO Programme will allow young Nigerian talent to share their knowledge so that UNDP and all partner agencies can benefit from this human capital. At the same time, the
Nigerian JPO Programme will strongly contribute to building national capacity for leadership and international engagement among the young Nigerian generation all over the country.’
Alluding to the success achieved by Government under the Technical Aid Corps Programme, the Minister averred that the Programme is another frontier which would be exploited by the Federal Government in its efforts to diversify the utilization of the potentials of its large young
population for overall national development.
The Minister, during discussion on the timeline and process of the JPO recruitment, further disclosed that Government had already provided funds this year for the commencement of the process. He also spoke of his readiness to raise awareness and understanding of the Programme and pledged to enhance the participation of States in the Programme.
Speaking at the welcome meeting for the Minister, Mr. Kun Vee Lee, Deputy Director, UNDP Office of Human Resources congratulated the leadership in Nigeria in taking the initiative to join the UNDP JPO Programme as the first African country thus showcasing the potential in African young talent and the commitment to promoting UN values.
The JPO Programme offers an excellent framework for supporting UNDP’s and all participating organisations’ activities inspecific countries of interest to Nigeria. It also contributes to the post 2015 agenda and theSustainable Development Goals.