By Christiana Ekpa
House of Representatives yesterday asked the federal government, through the Bank of Industry (BoI) and the Bank of Agriculture (BoA), etc, to resuscitate ailing industries in order to tackle the raging unemployment in the country, even as it referred the motion on it to its Industry Committee.
The Green Chamber also asked the federal government to embark on massive vocational training activities to prevent much reliance on the government sector to provide jobs.
These resolutions were sequel to a motion sponsored by Hon. James Faleke (APC, Lagos) on the “Need to Bail out Ailing Industries to absorb the unemployed graduates and create wealth for the county during plenary on Thursday.
Raising the motion, Hon. Faleke said he is concerned about the alarming 1.3 million new graduates the country is producing every year, from the over 170 accredited universities for National Youths Service Scheme, adding that it is estimated that there are about 20 million unemployed graduates in Nigeria at the moment.
“The above number does not include those graduates who are excluded from the national service on account of age or who attend other institutions of higher learning that do not present candidates for national service, such as holders of the Ordinary National Diploma (OND), National Certificate in Education (NCE) and those who attend the National Open University”, he said.
He said when these industries are resuscitated through the bailout fund and the issuing of tax incentives to these companies; it will assist in alleviating the unemployment rate faced by these graduates in the country.
Contributing to the motion, Hon. Olarotimi Agunsoye (APC, Lagos) emphasized on the need for a stable power supply for the country to tackle the situation and not just the call for bailout for the ailing industries.
Also, Hon. Nnoli Nnaji (PDP, Enugu), said “no matter how we try to resuscitate these ailing industries without investing in power, we may not find solution to this issue.
On his part, Hon. Aminu Suleiman (APC, Kano), said “Even if government provide the bailout like it did during former President Olusegun Obasanjo tenure, it will still not solve the issue if we don’t address the issue of power. We need to address the issue of power no matter the money it will cost”.
He added that stakeholders involved should engage the federal government in discussion to find out what should actually be done on that.
But, Hon. Joseph Adejare (APC, Lagos) did not share the same view, as for him: “This should not just come as a motion but a bill to tackle this issue squarely. Talking about power, if we continue to wait for it to be restored, we will not be able to achieve this”.