The Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, says it will soon commence the training of Niger Delta youths at the Innoson Kiara Academy, a Technical and Vocational Institution, affiliated to the Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company, as part of its skills acquisition programme.
The NDDC Interim Administrator, Mr Efiong Akwa, represented by his Special Adviser on Youths, Engr. Udengs Eradiri, said this after inspecting the facilities at the Innoson factory in Nnewi, Anambra State. He was accompanied by the NDDC Deputy Director Commercial and Industrial Development, Sir Daniel Ajunwa.
The statement by the Commission noted that the NDDC already had a partnership with the motor manufacturing company for the training of youths in different aspects of automobile maintenance, stating that the visit to the factory was to firm up the partnership.
According to Akwa, “There are lots of skills that our young ones can get from this facility. They can be trained in fabrication, assembly, painting and corrosion control, among others. We think that because of the growing economy of the Niger Delta and Nigeria, it is important that we begin to grow our own skills to be better able to manage our economy.”
The NDDC Chief Executive Officer observed that the Presidential Amnesty Programme had trained several Niger Delta youths in the facility and they came out with valuable skills. He stressed: “We want to continue with that kind of development and get to a situation where we will have a plant in the Niger Delta that will also be manufacturing vehicles. We will take the partnership to a point where a replica of the Innoson factory will be set up in the Niger Delta region.
“We are aware that the training facility here teaches skills, attitude and entrepreneurship. We know that if you learn a skill, you should be able to translate that into financial gains.”
The Chief Executive Officer of Innoson Kiara Academy, Mr Endi Ezengwa, thanked the NDDC for considering the facilities at Innoson Motors for the training of Niger Delta youths, stating that he looked forward to seeing the partnership come into effect.
According to him, “the skills from our factory is what we want to transfer to our young ones, so that apart from maintenance of vehicles, they can also manufacture vehicles to some degree. For instance, they can manufacture engine bolts, tools for agriculture and generally imbibe the concept of manufacturing.”
Ezengwa said that many of our youths had too much energy that needed to be properly harnessed and channeled into constructive use, such as in fixing vehicles and contributing to the industrialisation of the Niger Delta region.
He assured that the Innoson Group would in due course set up workshops in the Niger Delta region in collaboration with organisations like the NDDC.
In his own remarks, the NDDC Deputy Director Commercial and Industrial Development, Sir Ajunwa, said that the training partnership would be rewarding if the benefitting youths would be sufficiently empowered to set up on their own after the training.
He said that NDDC placed a lot of premium on industrial development and human capacity building and assured that the youths to be selected for the training would be spread across the nine Niger Delta states.