To help cushion the effect of the coronavirus pandemic on the people of Edo State the governor Godwin Obaseki has called for more investments in improved skill sets to enable youths of the state compete optimally in a post COVID -19 global economy.
Speaking during the commemoration of the United Nations World Youths Skills Day, Obaseki said it’s no longer news that the demand for Information Communications Technology, ICT, is on the rise, hence the need to acquire such skills cannot be overemphasised.
He explained that ICT skills are now highly sought after by everyone, to enable them work from home and minimise their chances of contracting the disease.
Obaseki said, “COVID-19 is going to be with us for a long time, according to medical experts, and leaders across the world need to start looking at the growth opportunities around the pandemic.
“Governments at all levels, development partners, allied institutions and groups must begin to equip the youth with new skill sets that will enable them function optimally in the emerging world order that relies on ICT”.
The Governor also shared the Edo state experience on its level of preparedness for a post COVID-19 economy.
He said, “In the education sector, we have prioritised Technical and Vocational Education and Training, TVET, as demonstrated by our huge investment in the revamp of former Benin Technical College, now Government Science and Technical College, and similar institutions across the state.
“At the basic education level, my administration is leveraging the EdoBest@home, an online schooling programme, which allows school pupils to access educational materials from an online database. Our plan is to scale up this initiative in the coming months so that more people will benefit from it.”
“Edo State is well positioned for an ICT-driven economy given our huge investment in support structures such as the fiber optics cable which we have extended to many parts of the state.
“We have an Innovation Hub that has produced some of the most innovative youths that have represented the state and country at several local and international ICT events.”
The World youth skills day was designated by United Nations General Assembly in 2014, to provide the opportunity for young people, technical and vocational education and training,TVET, institutions, as well as public and private sector stakeholders to acknowledge and celebrate the importance of equipping young people with skills for employment, decent work and entrepreneurship.