By Clem Khena-Ogbena
The Industrial Training Funds (ITF) has sought the assistance of United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) and foreign experts in the areas of technical expertise and research in appropriate skills required to develop such sectors as the Manufaturing, construction, Agriculture and other critical ones.
The ITF director-general, Professor Longmas Wapmuk, disclosed this in an exclusive interview with PEOPLES DAILY during a UNIDO stakeholders meeting in Abuja, on Monday.
Wapmuk, who said that UNIDO had been supporting ITF with technical expertise, also stated that his agency had been responsible for funding some of its own project, including research.
He stressed that ITF had concluded plans to visit various companies in the country, with a view to finding out the relevant skills that would be useful to these industries’ growth, noting that the job openings in the country were far fewer than the ever rising teeming population of employable youths.
Wapmuk stated: “UNIDO is supporting us particularly with technical expertise for us to be able to determine this requirement. The funding to major extent is coming from the Industrial Training Fund.”We are providing most of the money that will be used for this research but UNIDO is giving us technical expertise. Some people will be coming from outside of this country to assist us in this research. This means that UNIDO will be taking care of that component but physical resources that are required within the country will be provided by the Industrial Training Fund, in order to come out with real findings that will be useful to the entire country.
“We will be looking at five manufacturing, construction, agriculture and other sectors of the economy. We will be looking at them to be able to determine the type of skills that are required in the short and medium terms for the country.”
Wapmuk, however, called on the Nigerian government to invest more in the area of training of manpower in the country, particularly in the field of technology.
He said, “If we are able to train people on technical area, i think that Nigerians who are creative will be able to use the skills acquired to produce other things for the economy or even set up their own industries.”
He expressed the hope that when this was done, more people would be employed in the country.