By: Ikhili Ebalu, Benin City
As the Federal and state governments roll out plans for the post #Endsars protest to engage Nigeria Youths in different activities, the Chairman of Owan West Local Government Council , Edo State , Hon. Frank Ilaboya. said that his Council has concluded plans to launch a Youth Foundation that will positively engage the youth in the local govt.
Hon. Frank Ilaboya, who was given an award as the “The Most Outstanding Local Government Chairman” by the Association of Christain Journalists,
said the foundation will raise N100m in three years (2021-2023) and this will be used to engage the youths of the council positively.
Ilaboya, a former Chairman, Lagos State Sports Writers Association of Nigeria, and Edo State Football Association, added that the #EndSars protest has provided him the unique opportunity to roll out this package.
“When I assumed office as the Executive Chairman three years ago, my first assignment was to profile the youths in the local govt and the figures I got was frightening. From the report of that study, I knew if something was not done about youth empowerment, we would be having big problem in our hands.
“That was how we started our youth empowerment scheme that has today being adjudged to be unique.
“And because of the current economic situation in the country, we have been engaging the private sector in our programmes.
“For this Foundation which we are lauchhing December 16, 2020, we are going to leverage on private sector as well. In fact, our target is for Owan West sons and daughters to contribute the sum of five thousand naira per annum. This will give us N25m in the first year, N35m and N40m in the subsequent years
“Outside this, we are coming out with a by law that will enable the council contribute one per cent of it’s monthly allocation to the fund.
“We are also looking to partner with corporate organizations and Foundations which are into youth empowerments for support.
“We are very determined to see it through, especially now that the youths have spoken loud and clear.
“Thev#Endsars protest is a wake up call, and time to act is now. For us in Owan West, this package is a divine response to the youth agitation and I am very positive that it will sell.
“We have identified three categories of beneficiaries; those who have finished Universities will be deployed to schools to teach or serve as Administrative Officers, those with learned skills will be empowered to start their own business while those in school will enjoy one form of busary or the other.
“In all, it’s a win win package that will answer all the questions that agi our youth. Like I said earlier, the Owan West Youth Trust Fund is a divine response to a better future for our youths.
“I have told the youths of Owan West that as from April next year(when disbursement to beneficiaries will start), their worries will be over, Owan West will be the envy of other local governments in the federation.
“I want to use this opportunity to call our sons and daughters as well as other well meaning Nigerians to support us as we design a flourishing future for our youths. December 16 is the lauch date and I expect a full
buy-in gor this package.
The N100m Target for the three years is quite achievable going by the template we have designed.”