N586bn Approved For Nigerian Youths Under 35 As FG Unveils Programme, Eyes 1.2 Million Digital Jobs - LagosTrend

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Friday, October 6, 2023

N586bn Approved For Nigerian Youths Under 35 As FG Unveils Programme, Eyes 1.2 Million Digital Jobs


The Bola Tinubu-led Federal Government is set to launch a $617.7 million (N586 billion) investment under the Digital and Creative Enterprises (i-DICE) programme starting November 2023.

The programme is aimed at creating millions of jobs in the Nigerian technology space.

Vice President Kashim Shettima, on Friday, directed the i-DICE Steering Committee to ensure that the programme starts before the end of November this year.

He emphasised the importance of the initiative to the Federal Government’s digital jobs drive, saying the administration is keen on delivering on its promises to Nigerians.

“The peculiarity of the challenges we face in the country demands that we have to create jobs for our teeming youths to address the crises associated with youth unemployment. I want to appeal to all of us here to unite and see that this programme takes off latest by the end of November this year.

“I am interested in getting a weekly update on what is being done to kick-start this programme. We also need to spread out to cover the whole country so that there is inclusivity. If we judiciously utilise these funds, the target impact and anticipated benefits will be immense.

“I want to assure the technical committee, all those working on this programme and our international partners, that you will get all the support that you will need. We mean business. My boss, President Bola Tinubu, is passionate about the transformation of this country. So, you have nothing to worry about the government’s support,” Stanley Nkwocha, Shettima’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Communications, quoted the VP as telling the team.

The i-DICE programme will cover the digital, creative and entertainment sectors, with a focus on supporting startups and young people below the age of 35.

The programme will offer grants, loans and equity to eligible businesses.

The Minister of Finance, Wale Edun, told State House correspondents after meeting with the VP that the project is “very key to the promise of His Excellency, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, particularly to the youth, for the creation of 1.2 million digital jobs”.

The Minister of Communications, Innovation and Digital Economy, Mr Bosun Tijjani, said the scheme is a “unique opportunity” to invest in the Nigerian technology and creative ecosystem, which he described as “the best on the continent”.

The Managing Director of the Bank of Industry, Mr Kayode Pitan, confirmed that the Vice President has given them marching orders to commence the programme by November 2023.

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