Nigeria: Quality Education Key To Youth Development – Nya-Etok

By (Ruth Natsa)

Politician and Social Housing crusader, Architect Ezekiel Nya-Etok has stressed the need for Nigeria to restrategize their development plan and focus on quality education in the North

He stressed that this was because quality education is the bedrock of every development.

Architect Nya- Etok said the youth in northern Nigeria are extremely technological and very resourceful stressed the need to harness this resourcefulness and lead them to be part of the sustainable development of the country”

He noted that Northern Youths experience difficulties in getting the education and empowerment they deserved noting that one of the most crucial challenges facing the North was preparing her young for the future.

The Architect cum politician stated this during an award ceremony organised by the Northern Youth Council of Nigeria where he was awarded with the Sir Ahmadu Bello Leadership award in Abuja.

He appealed to the Elders and Leaders of the North to give the youth the Level Of Education and empowerment they deserved.

“On a serous note I think the time has come when we want to look at issues affecting northern Nigeria youth and know that whatever happen to one happen to all calling on all leaders and elders in all over Nigeria North, South, East and West to stand up for the youth.”

“ l want to tell the elders in the north that we respect them but the time has come when you need to realised that the youth have something to offer, the time has come when you’ll believe that the youth are in succession planning, the time has come when you will realise that the youth in the Northern Nigeria do not only belong to you, they all belong to all of us because Nigeria is one country whatever happen to one happen to all .

He stressed that “We will not allow the resourcefulness of the youth of Northern Nigeria to lay on tight we are all going to synergies and network to make sure we bring the resourcefulness of the youth out and together we are going to form a country where there is no diversity because I am sick and tired of religion dividing us we have to come to the realisation that if we want to have one Nigeria, we have it indeed.”

He maintained that people did not understand that the youths are enlightened because they go on social media, read about what is happening to their contemporaries.


Kenya: Youth Survey Shows Perception Of Safety, Police And Educators

By (Priya Sridhar)

Halima Musa and her cousins are part of a group called City Heights Youth for Change, made up mostly of first generation African refugee students from City Heights. In the past few years, the group has worked to get halal food into San Diego schools so kids could have healthy and culturally appropriate choices. They also worked to get voter registration numbers up in their neighborhood.

Now, the group has completed a survey of 300 City Heights young people to document how they view their community.

Musa and her cousins moved to City Heights from Kenya as young kids. Now, the young women are in college and have made it their mission to be ambassadors of City Heights to the rest of San Diego.

“Most of the time when the media comes into City Heights it’s only to report on stuff that’s bad. But when youth are being involved in political action or being involved in their school nobody’s really there to showcase it and let people know that the youth in City Heights are really invested in their community,” Musa said.

She says they wanted to control the dialogue about where they grew up and let local leaders know what the next generation thinks they need to focus on.

“We felt that as City Heights youth, we are never really at the forefront of telling what City Heights is like. So we wanted to get other input from youth like us and get them to tell us how they feel City Heights can be improved or how it is now,” she said.

Their latest survey took almost two years to complete. The group looked at young people’s feelings towards law enforcement and educators and safety in their community.

They found that as City Heights youth got older, their relationships with law enforcement became more negative. They also found that young men were more likely to have a negative relationship with police than young women.

“Most of the younger kids that were the same age as me, they don’t really trust the police either because of the conflicts that happen between the youth and the police officers,” said Sahra Mkoma, a member of City Heights Youth for Change and Musa’s cousin.

Not all of the findings were negative, Musa says she was surprised by some of the positive perceptions young people had of City Heights, like the way they saw their teachers.

“We found that most students feel like their teachers are really engaged in what they’re learning and they’re really helping them throughout the process in helping them become better students and better people. But they just don’t have the resources to make sure that their students are actually successful,” she said.

The other big takeaway — the young women hope gets the attention of City Heights leaders — is the youth’s perception of safety in their community. They found that as young people got older, they tended to feel less safe. They also found that young people felt the least safe in parks around schools in City Heights.

“People feel like schools, specifically parks surrounded by schools, are the most unsafe parts of the community, which I feel like should change because that’s usually where kids spend their time,” Musa said.

Isha Mkoma, Musa’s other cousin says even though City Heights needs some improvements she wants the rest of San Diego to know how great her neighborhood is.

“It’s a great community to live in, the people are very friendly, it’s very diverse and everybody … once you tell them to come to a place they will all be helpful, they’re very helpful around here,” Mkoma said.

Education: Dubai Cares and Deyaar partner to build community school in Malawi

By (Gavin David)

Dubai Cares and Deyaar, a Dubai-based property developer, have announced a partnership to improve access to education for children in the south-eastern African country of Malawi.

According to a report by WAM, the two sides signed an agreement that will see the developer work with Dubai Cares to build a community-based school in Malawi. Construction on the project is set to start in 2020, it added.

Deyaar has previously collaborated with Dubai Cares to build schools in Nepal and Senegal.

“We may be a UAE company, but we believe that our responsibility to do good and give back extends beyond the borders of our country,” said Saeed Al Qatami, CEO of Deyaar.

“Dubai Cares has provided us with several opportunities in recent years to make a real difference in the lives of hundreds of families in communities in need of support, and we are honoured to be able to make a positive impact on a Malawian community through this new project.”

As a UAE-based philanthropic organisation, Dubai Cares has played a key role in helping to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4, which aims to ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promoting lifelong learning by 2030, by supporting programs in early childhood development, access to quality primary and secondary education and vocational education and training for youths.

To date, the organisation has supported education programs in Afghanistan, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Bangladesh, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Cambodia, Chad, Comoros Islands, Colombia, Djibouti, Egypt, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Haiti, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Ivory Coast, Jordan, Kenya, Kiribati, Laos, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mexico, Mozambique, Nepal, Niger, Pakistan, Palestine, Peru, Philippines, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, St. Vincent & Grenadines, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, Vanuatu, Vietnam, Yemen, Zambia and Zimbabwe

“We are excited to once again have Deyaar supporting our Adopt a School initiative. The ability to contribute towards changing children and young people’s lives requires collaborative efforts from across the community, and that is why we value the support of companies in the UAE, with Deyaar being one of the most prominent examples,” said Tariq Al Gurg, CEO of Dubai Cares.

“I am also confident that this opportunity will offer Deyaar’s volunteers a unique insight into our programs in developing countries and the chance to leave a positive and meaningful impact on underprivileged communities,” he added.

Earlier this month, Deyaar announced its financial results for Q1 2019, ended March 31, 2019. It reported revenues of $47.8 million and a net profit of $4.98 million.

In a statement at the time, Deyaar said that the Q1 2019 revenues were consistent with Q1 2018, which was $48 million. Deyaar’s project pipeline includes several handovers in 2019.

Nigeria: Don canvasses for skills, competency for youth

By Ibrahim Musa Giginyu

The Director, Centre for Gender Studies, Bayero University Kano, Professor Aisha Abdul Isma’il has said the only way to reduce the level of unemployment among youths is through ensuring acquisition of skills, knowledge and competency to enable them make informed decision in their chosen career.

She said this in a paper she presented on ‘Career Guidance for sustainable development in Nigeria: youth employability as the way forward’ which she presented during a roundtable discussion organised by the Centre and Rosa Luxemburg Foundation.

Professor Aisha stated that there was a need for youth to acquire a life skill training that will equip them to be able to be able to display competency not only in their certificates but also in the job they do as either employers or employees.

“The high level of unemployment especially among the youths in Nigeria can be addressed when youth acquired a life skill training that will equip them to be able to be able to display competency not only in their certificates but also in the job they do,” she said.

Programme Manager, Rosa Luxemburg Foundation in Nigeria, Ms Angela Odeh said the foundation has been in Africa since 2010 adding that it has been working mostly in the Niger-Delta region.

It is in its pioneering stage of commencing its work in the Norther part of Nigeria adding that the foundation has been delivering critical research on neoliberal capitalism, produces analytic work on political strategy, policy among others.

Source Daily Trust

Preparing Africa’s Graduates For Today’s Jobs

…Experts call for modernising school curricula to match a rapidly changing labour market

By Raphael Obonyo

Many Africans with advanced qualifications are finding their university degrees are just not enough to land a job in the current market.

Ruth Rono graduated from Chuka University, Kenya, in 2015 with first-class honours. Without a job after many years of trying, Ms. Rono was forced to take menial jobs such as working on people’s farms.

Down south, Banji Robert bagged a bachelor’s degree in economics and mathematics from the University of Zambia in 2016 and would have gladly accepted an entry-level job in one of those fields. Two years later, without success, a frustrated Mr. Robert is now a cashier in a grocery store.

“It is not easy to pay bills, let alone start a family,” Mr. Robert, 25, told Africa Renewal. “The pressure is too much when you have education but no job.”

A graduate of development studies, Robert Sunday Ayo, 26, finds himself in a similar situation. “It is sad and very frustrating that it is not possible to find work, even with my kind of résumé,” he says regretfully, adding that he now drives a taxi in Abuja, Nigeria.

Africa Renewal interviewed dozens of young people across the continent who expressed dismay that their education is not propelling them toward their career aspirations.

Basic skills
One of the reasons for graduate unemployment is that “far too many youths across sub-Saharan Africa emerge from school without the basic skills to advance in their lives,” says Siddarth Chatterjee, the United Nations Resident Coordinator in Kenya. “It means there is something not working regarding investment in education.”

In general, some 60% of Africa’s unemployed are youth, according to the World Bank, and many are resorting to crime, radicalisation, or the often-perilous migration journey across the Mediterranean to Europe in search of greener pastures, says Mr. Chatterjee.

And because of increasing automation, the situation for graduates could worsen in the coming years.

According to the Accra-based African Center for Economic Transformation, a policy think tank, almost 50% of current university graduates in Africa do not get jobs.

The root cause of the problem is a mismatch between the education they are getting and labour market needs, maintains Sarah Anyang Agbor, the African Union (AU) Commissioner for Human Resources, Science and Technology.

Joseph Odunga, who has taught mathematics in Kenya and Botswana, agrees. “The lessons we used to teach in the 1990s are the same course content we are teaching today,” he says, implying that current education curricula for some subjects are outdated.

That view is shared by Ms. Agbor, who says that, “It is generally true that in most countries [in Africa], education systems have been geared toward getting a qualification rather than acquiring skills and competences that will enhance successful integration into the world of work.”

Promising sectors
While some complain of the difficulty in finding a job, sectors such as construction, manufacturing, digital economy, transport, banking, medical care and engineering continue to need skilled candidates, says Anne-Elvire Esmel, a strategic communications officer with the AfroChampions Initiative, which promotes Africa’s homegrown companies.

The mismatch between labour market needs and the skills of many graduates in Africa is underscored by the Kenyan government’s recent launch of the “Competency-Based Curriculum,” which integrates digital technologies to teach students inclined toward information and communications technology the skills they’ll need to enter the digital apps industry that is expanding rapidly in the country.

Ms. Esmel would like countries to develop “more theoretical courses adapted to problem solving with regards to economic challenges, providing graduates with practical skills for the labour market and investing in STEM—sciences, technology, engineering and mathematics—which is not sufficiently done at present.”

Her organization proposes an Africa-focused infrastructure plan that uses local skills to implement projects.

“We have massive infrastructure needs and ought to provide opportunities to a huge young population over the next decade,” Ms. Esmel says. She stresses the need for competent artisans and technicians in the building and construction industry and in power and energy plants.

The snag, however, is that “technical vocational education and training [TVET] is stigmatized as a second-rate learning track, despite its capacity to promote the acquisition and development of entrepreneurial and innovative skills for self-employment,” laments Mr. Chatterjee.

With adequate allocation of resources, he says “modernizing teaching and learning facilities in TVET institutions, as well as training and continuous professional development of TVET teachers” will be possible.

Overall, sub-Saharan Africa spends 5% of its GDP on education. In 2015, in Incheon, South Korea, the World Education Forum adopted a declaration that requires countries to commit 4%–6% of their GDP or 15%–20% of their public expenditures to education. UNESCO organised the forum with support of other UN entities and the World Bank.

A recent report shows Zimbabwe, Eswatini (formerly Swaziland) and Senegal have met or surpassed the 6%-of-GDP target, while South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Guinea-Bissau, Uganda and Madagascar, among others, spend less than 2.5% of their GDP on education.

Another concern is that a high proportion of education spending (an average of 85%) is recurrent, including 56% expended on wages.

Kenya’s former Cabinet Secretary for Education, Amina Mohammed, is less critical of Africa’s education systems, saying, “Most education systems have inbuilt skill development curricula. That is why over the years most African countries have developed human capital that is driving development agenda.”

In an interview with Africa Renewal, Ms. Mohammed said, “Unemployment itself is not a function of the education systems and skills alone. There are many other factors that lead to unemployment, ranging from sociopolitical stability, economic structures, and global dynamics, together with the general economic growth of the countries.”

Africa needs job creators
Ms. Mohammed suggests Africa mostly needs job creators—namely entrepreneurs. “We need African Silicon Valleys sprouting across the continent. Economies that thrive around the world are built on the foundation of an enabling environment for entrepreneurship to flourish.

“Global multinationals such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and WhatsApp employ hundreds of thousands of people, directly and indirectly,” adds Ms. Mohammed.

Many are looking forward to an African Continental Free Trade Area, a single pan-African market for goods and services expected to go into force in the coming months, which will enable skilled young Africans to move freely within markets in search of jobs.

Still, Aya Chebbi, the AU’s youth envoy, says that without the right skills, the youth may reap little from the continent’s economic integration. She echoes others calling for the continent’s education curricula to be updated to align with the current labour market.

Ms. Chebbi says young people can hone their entrepreneurial skills if they focus on science, technology, engineering, entrepreneurship and mathematics and have access to on-the-job training.

In December 2018, Morocco hosted the first African Forum on Vocational Training. The aim was to create a model of partnership among African countries to promote access to vocational training for youth. The forum signaled that African countries are attaching increasing importance to vocational training.

The private sector must complement governments’ efforts, advises Ms. Esmel.

Ms. Agbor agrees: “The private sector needs to be strongly linked to the education and training systems to meet labour market needs.” He encourages companies to offer young people apprenticeships, internships, mentorships and even skills certification programs.

Source Modern Ghana

Nigeria: Fayemi admonishes youths on good reading culture

The wife of Ekiti Governor, Mrs Bisi Fayemi has advised Nigerian youths to develop good reading habit that would stimulate their intellect and thinking faculties.

Fayemi gave the advice on Tuesday at the 2019 World Reading Day in Ado Ekiti.

She told the gathering of youths that sustainable growth and development can only be achieved through adequate and continuous pursuit of knowledge. She, however, decried the negligence of youths towards reading, saying that the behaviour had negatively impacted on Nigeria development process. ‘We have been shown cont

‘We have been shown continuously that girl-child education drives development’

The wife of the governor said it was sad that youths now give prominence to frivolities, rather than engaging in activities capable of sharpening their intelligence and reasoning through reading.

She said the present administration will soon embark on building of public library to support quality education in the state.

Fayemi also advocated for the incorporation of sex education into the country’s school curriculum, saying that this would open up children knowledge on sex and prevent abuse.

She explained that one of the major problems facing Nigeria parents and children was the shame and the secrecy in discussing sex matters.

She said efforts should be geared towards sensitising children on sex education at various ages and what they should expect as it relates to puberty as they grow.

Source Vanguard Nigeria