'INCREASE BUDGETARY ALLOCATION TO NDE'
The Minister of Labour and Productivity, Chief Emeka Wogu, has called for the upward review of budgetary allocations to the National Directorate of Employment.
This, he said, would ensure that it delivered its mandate of tackling unemployment in the country.
Wogu spoke in an interview with our correspondent on Thursday, at the venue of the Lagos International Trade Fair.
According to him, the potential is there for Nigeria to create 15 million jobs in 10 years as contained in a recent report by the National Committee on Job Creation, if only the government can key into it.
The minister also noted that there was the need to leverage on the expertise of agencies like the NDE to make this happen.
He said, 'They have the human resources needed but the main problem is budgetary allocations. If we have to prioritise our budget allocations in this country, I believe the first on the list should be job creation, and then, infrastructure, which the government is tackling, as well as health and education.'
He appealed to members of the National Assembly to increase budgetary allocation to the NDE, adding that it would also help the lawmakers in executing their constituency projects with the availability of a skilled workforce to handle them.
He added, 'If you have funds allocated for works but do not have the skill manpower to do them, then we will resort to importing labour or they will not be done. Even before my appointment as the minister of labour, I am one of the people who have been watching the NDE from the perspective of what they have been doing in the area of providing skills for many unskilled Nigerians.
'They have been mitigating unemployment through imparting skills to the unskilled.'
Wogu also disclosed that the proposed unemployed database project would be domiciled with the directorate to ensure effective execution.
He explained that the NDE would be in a better position to execute the project through public-private partnership.