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FG to provide N75bn in 3 years for youth empowerment – Minister

Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed has said that the Federal Government has created a N75 billion entrepreneurship support fund, to enable youth in the country grow their businesses and be economically independent.

The minister made the disclosure in an interview with newsmen after a meeting with Kaduna State Acting Governor, Dr Hadiza Balarabe, on Saturday in Kaduna.

According to her, N25 billion will be released over three years starting from 2021.

She explained that the fund would support the youth to actualize their innovative and interprenueal ideas, be productive and employers of labour.

On her meeting with the acting governor, Ahmed said it was in response to the directive of President Muhammadu Buhari for all ministers to return to their states and get inputs on best ways to empower the youths in each state.

“We came to meet the Government of Kaduna State to discuss the issue of the protest that has been happening around us, specifically the EndSARS protest.

“The state has already prepared an excellent report on all the plans and efforts they have undertaken and we have also come to understand the challenges that they have and how best to support them,” she said.

“We are here in response to the directives President Muhammadu Buhari gave all ministers to come back home and engage major stakeholders within the state to see how best we can support the state to address the security issues that we have at this time.

“It was a wonderful meeting and very productive,” the minister said.

The Minister of Environment, Dr. Muhammad Mahmud was also part of the meeting.

He noted that the state government had kept a chronicle of events from the very first day of the protest, adding that the delegation was very impressed.

“We are very impressed and we can see why the little protests that have taken place here were very peaceful,” he added.

On the Federal Government 774,000 jobs, Mahmoud said some of the beneficiaries will be engaged in the various recycling plants built by the government in states, to recycle products especially plastic wastes.

He added that with the approval of the new policy on plastic waste management in the country by the Federal Executive Council on Wednesday, “the ministry is working on several initiatives that will create employment opportunities and create wealth for the youths.”

The acting governor, had earlier conveyed the appreciation of the state government to the people of the state for remaining peaceful during the protest.

“I think in Kaduna we have our own fair share of crisis and we know enough, we want to be conscious on the way we handle such, I think that was one thing that played out for us.

“I pray that we continue to have that kind of understanding; whatever it is you didn’t get in peace, you won’t get it in a war situation. Our youths have now understand how to settle issues.”

She advised the youths to always conduct themselves lawfully.

“I want them to continue to be law abiding citizens and conduct themselves in a manner that is worthy,” Balarabe said.

The acting governor assured that Kaduna state would continue to look into the demands of the youths, so as to make a difference in delivering good governance in the state.

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