By Albert Akota
About 120 youth who gathered to celebrate the 55th birthday anniversary of the Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Chief Sunday Akin Dare, at his Akobo area residence in Ibadan have applauded his introduction of a scholarship scheme for Indigent Oyo State students.
It was a gathering like no other as issues around youth development took center-stage, overshadowing the birthday celebrations. The celebrations-turned -youth engagement excited the celebrant as he fielded questions from the youths and also enlightened them on the achievements of the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development.
He particularly laid emphasis on the Nigerian Youth Investment Fund (NYIF) which is one of the Initiatives of the Ministry.
Speaking at the occasion, the Minister said “The NYIF is aimed at essentially supporting entrepreneurship among the youth. Thousands of youth have registered for this loan which will go a long way to boost Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs) as well as encourage new business innovations.”
“Also, the Ministry has introduced the Graduate Attachment Program (GAP) with its focal point on integrating fresh graduates into relevant jobs/skills in order to provide them with the necessary work experience(s) while they also receive stipend during the program.
At the end of this program, the beneficiaries will be enriched with the required work experience for other larger roles in the public and private sectors.”he affirmed.
While adding that the country is counting on the youth for its economic vitality, Dare said he believes that with the present crop of hardworking youth, Nigeria’s better future is guaranteed.
One of the highlights of the event was the launch of the Dare Undergraduate Scholarship Scheme (DUGGS) which is aimed at providing financial support to indigent students of Oyo State, in any University or Polytechnic across the nation.
The launch of the scholarship was met with a standing ovation from the audience of youths who immediately made enquiries on the process of benefiting from the scholarship scheme.
Dare assured them that this maiden edition of the scholarship will accommodate as many students as possible who meet the eligibility criteria. However, the scholarship scheme will eventually become an annual event.
Chieftains of the All Progressive Congress (APC), also joined the jubilant Youths, insisting that although they are not youths, they would not miss out on any opportunity to celebrate Chief Sunday Dare who has been providing Oyo APC with tremendous support to stabilize the party in the state.