The Progressive Governors Forum (PGF), the umbrella body of the states governed by the All Progressives Congress (APC), has embarked on Policy Design Sessions on unemployment which it described as one of the major economic and security challenges confronting Nigeria today.
Speaking during the inauguration of the policy design session, Chairman of the Progressives Governors Forum and governor of Imo state, Chief Rochas Okorocha tasked the panel which comprises economists, policy development experts, commissioners of economic planning from APC states and other technocrats to develop workable and easily implementable solutions to mitigate the problem of unemployment plaguing our society…
The Governor, who was represented by the Imo state Commissioner of Planning, Ms Adaora Ijezie, said that the policy design sessions were part of the APC’s approach to win the confidence of Nigerians and that the party intended nothing less than a total overhaul of the present system which had stagnated development, and only paid lip service to the issues of insecurity and worsening poverty.
Also speaking at the event, the Ogun state governor and host of the session, Senator Ibikunle Amosun said that the policy design sessions were a follow-up to the Progressive Governance Lecture in Ibadan, three weeks ago which examined unemployment and the crisis of development in Nigeria. The governor explained that APC states would not stop at mere proclamations, but back up their words with actions by designing policies to create jobs in all sectors of the economy.
Governor Amosun tasked the participants to work assiduously to design policies that recognize the similarities and peculiarities of individual APC states and work out strategies that each state would adopt easily to stimulate job creation, which he described as critical to security and social stability, which the PDP had failed to do.
Director General of the Progressive Governors Forum, Mr. Salihu Lukman explained that the objective of the policy design session was to develop policy proposals that would assist all APC states in their bid to create jobs. He lamented the state of unemployment in Nigeria which he said was unacceptable, giving the high growth figures being bandied around by the federal government. He said the recent deaths of applicants trying to get jobs in the Nigeria Immigration Service was a tragic and sad comment about unemployment in Nigeria.
In addition to state commissioners of planning from APC states, other technocrats and development experts participating in the policy design session are Dr. Ayo Teriba, who delivered the inaugural PGF lecture in Ibadan in February, Dr. Hussein Abdu, Country Director of ActionAid International, Mr. Innocent Chukwuma of Ford Foundation, Professor Okey Onyejekwe, Ambassador Fati Balla and technical advisors and assistants from the PGF.
It is expected that all policy proposals on employment creation designed by the panel be presented to APC state governors for adoption and implementation.
Progressive Governors Forum
79 Nelson Mandela Street, Asokoro,
18th March, 2014