The National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI) and the Yobe State University, Damaturu have agreed, in the spirit of corporate social responsibility, to collaborate in the deployment of technology and engineering tools in the North-East to create jobs for youths, men and women in the areas so as to make their recruitment into insurgency impossible.
Speaking at the weekend in Abuja when the Vice Chancellor of the Yobe State University Prof. Yakubu Muhktar and his management team visited the headquarters of NASENI, the Executive Vice Chairman of NASENI Prof Mohammed Sani Haruna said insurgency in North-East has continued largely because of high rate of unemployment of youths, men and women in the areas.
According to him, “the absence of viable economic alternatives for the youths and men in those areas has made them vulnerable to crime” adding that if the mineral resources available in the North East, especially in Yobe state, were harnessed using technology tools available in NASENI, the youths would be gainfully employed and this naturally would turn them away from insurgency activities which advertently expose them to danger”.
An Idle hand is devil’s workshop, the saying goes, and therefore “the collaboration between NASENI and Yobe State University would see to the training of unemployed youths around the areas in skill acquisition through waste to wealth technologies that are available in NASENI. The intention is to get the youths out of the streets. NASENI will teach the youths, men and women on new skills so they can meet their livelihood thereby reducing the tendency to take to crime”.
The NASENI boss further said that “Yobe State is blessed with mineral resources and if the state could deploy some of the technologies in NASENI, the youths will be trained on how to use locally developed technologies to harness the resources in the State thereby creating opportunities for gainful employment for themselves.
Prof. Haruna explained that the Agency also could intervene in several areas like water project or irrigation through the use of small hydro Kinetic turbine or the solar energy produced by NASENI to generate electricity. According to him, the schools that have been destroyed by Boko Haram insurgence can be refurbished by providing educational tools, especially primary and secondary laboratory equipment to be powered by Solar.
Yobe State University is located in Damaturu, Yobe State, one of the three States currently under high impacts of insurgence activities the remaining two being Adamawa and Borno States.
Earlier in his remarks, the Vice Chancellor of the Yobe State University, Prof. Yakubu Muhktar commended NASENI for its several achievements especially the development of engineering and technology infrastructures for the development of the country, saying that if the technologies and human resources available in the Agency were properly harnessed, they could help to transform the country. He observed that NASENI was committed to the development of the country by its various interventions in sectors of the economy through research, development and production of engineering and technology tools.
“I am highly impressed with what the Agency is doing and I believe that the collaboration between NASENI and Yobe State University will add value not only to the university but also Yobe State including reduction in insurgency. There are technologies available in the Agency that can be used to address these challenges. We are here to look for necessary area of collaboration that would help the university to address youth unemployment”, said Prof. Muhktar.
The collaboration also is expected to give new skills and capacity to staff and the students of the university. NASENI and the University would train the students on several skills and in return they can train the youths in the areas, especially those that do not have basic education. The Yobe State University campus will be used as training center in the implementation of the programme. New skills also would be given to local artisans: plumbers, mechanics, electricians, technicians, and welders while others would be trained on how to use Agricultural processing technologies produced by the Agency.
Deputy Director, Information.