The Federal Government on Tuesday admitted that efforts aimed at tackling unemployment in the country since independence had not yielded desired results.
It said the failure of the past governments’ efforts were obvious with continued youth unemployment in the country.
Vice President Namadi Sambo made the submission during the inauguration of the State Implementation Committee of the Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme’s Community Services, Women and Youths Employment Project at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Sambo said President Goodluck Jonathan administration decided to evolve innovative methods of tackling unemployment because it was no longer comfortable with the indices.
He said, “Like every other nation, Nigeria, for decades, has been faced with high unemployment rates among our youth.
“Since independence, several strategies and institutional mechanisms have been put in place to address unemployment and the attendant poverty among our youth.
“These efforts to solve the problem of unemployment and wealth creation, however, have not yielded the desired results given that we still face high rates of youth unemployment.
“While high unemployment, especially among the youth, is currently a global phenomenon, which currently has almost 50 per cent youth unemployment rate in several countries, it is not acceptable to this administration that a high percentage of our youth remain unemployed and underemployed.
“This is why our administration has evolved innovative methods of tackling the challenge of unemployment.”
Sambo said the Community Services Programme was designed to employ 320,000 unskilled youths, women and physically challenged persons annually.
He explained that the programme and the graduate internship programme were part of the benefits of the partial fuel subsidy removal under SURE-P.
He said, “This administration remains committed to delivering the dividends of the partial subsidy removal to the Nigerian people, and I urge that you take appropriate and urgent steps towards meeting the targets set for the year 2012 deliverables for women and youth employment as defined for this project.”
Chairman of the SURE-P, Dr. Christopher Kolade, said since inception, the Federal Government’s programme had intervened in some critical sectors of the nation’s economy.
Kolade asked the committee members to see their job as service to the nation and give the assignment their best shot.