Youths in Niger State have been called to take advantage of opportunities being provided by some Nongovernmental Organizations (NGOs) to acquire various skills to enable them to become self-reliant.
The call was made by the Permanent Secretary, Niger State Ministry of Information and Strategy, Mrs. Hadiza Mohammed Shiru, when she received in her office members of an NGO based in Minna, the Progressive Ambassadors, who were in her office for a courtesy visit.
She noted with concern the level of youth restlessness being experienced in the state, which she attributed to the abuse of substances, while calling on stakeholders to rally around the government and ensure that children were brought up properly to face the challenges of life devoid of any form of criminality.
The permanent secretary tasked the organisation with changing the perception of the youths from idleness to engaging in useful ventures in order to earn a living, adding that no society will develop with a high number of its youth without skills and jobless.
Mrs. Hadiza Shiru further enjoined the organisation to ensure that beneficiaries of its skills acquisition programme were monitored for proper utilisation of the starter packs distributed to them.
She also implored women not to be left behind and to take advantage of the programmes to better their lives.
Speaking earlier, the leader of the delegation, who is the Chairman of Progressive Ambassadors, Mohammed Abdullahi Mujahid, pointed out that they were in the ministry for collaborative partnership in the area of publicity for their programmes in the state, as well as spreading their tentacles to the 25 LGAs.
He disclosed that the organisation was already in partnership with the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) to stem the tide of drug-related issues and youth rebellion bedevilling society in recent times.
According to Mujahid, the organisation will soon graduate about 33 apprentices from various skill acquisition programmes and has called for the support of stakeholders to achieve its dream.
The chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Katcha Local Government Area of Niger State, Hon. Mohammed Aliyu Mujaidu, has said preparations have been concluded for the swearing in of councillors elected during the last November election.
The chairman disclosed further that the council chairman, Hon. Danlami Abdullahi Saku, will also be received back by the APC from the SDP.
The party boss stated this when asked by newsmen whether the ceremony will hold over rumours circulating on online news platforms about fears of a possible crisis.
He said there was no truth to the claim that tensions were high in Katcha as himself and the council chairman had a meeting to perfect preparations for the swearing-in ceremony.
He said, "As I was talking to you now, everywhere in Katcha was calm. People were anxious and happy that, at last, the governor, Hon. Mohammed Umar Bago, had taken a popular decision that would bring lasting peace to Katcha.
"Let me tell you again that the council chairman who won the election under the SDP has decamped to the APC, and we will formally receive him inshallah. Don't believe anything told by anybody other than the one I just told you ", he said.
Hon. Aliyu Mujaidu said the State Independent Electoral Commission has toed the path of law, and the governor, who is a respecter of the rule of law, has insisted the right thing must be done.
He said there was not an iota of tension in Katcha, pointing out that even the council chairman was reassuring them that he would carry out the directives of the governor.
According to him, "please just try and come to Katcha tomorrow and witness the swearing in. Since November, when the election took place, the council has been operating without councillors. Now, by tomorrow, the council will be complete", he said.
The State Independent Electoral Commission had some days ago issued certificates of return to nine APC councillors, whom it said won the last November election. But because of legal and political disagreements, the council chairman was unable to swear them in.