2nd April, 2012
The Industrial Training Fund (ITF) says it has trained more than 12 million Nigerians in its mandate to generate a pool of highly trained work force for the key sectors of the economy.
Speaking at the 23rd Enugu International Trade Fair on Sunday, ITF’s Director-General, Professor Longmas Wapmuk, said the contributions of those trained to the various sectors of the nation’s economy were immeasurable.
“As pioneers in the human resource development sub-sector, our role in ensuring training consciousness in Nigerian employers not only largely accounts for the greater number of Nigerians that are trained today, but also the litany of consultants that earn a living from training.
“Without the pioneering efforts of the ITF, the situation would have been vastly different,” said Wapmuk, who was represented by the Enugu Area Office Manager, Mr. Peter Agbo.
He described training as indispensable “because it is clear that without a skilled labour force there can be no question of optimal use or proper maintenance of physical capital”.
The chief executive officer said the fund also desired to correct the absence of entrepreneurial mind-set in the youth by designing appropriate programmes to produce confident, competent, patriotic and honest citizens able to discharge private and public trusts.
He said the 2011 amendment of the ITF Act had expanded and deepened its mandate, adding that it had also challenged the organisation to render better services to its clients.
“Indeed, we are aware that efforts at poverty reduction, employment generation and wealth creation will only produce the expected outcome if it is driven by adequate skilled manpower,” he said.
Wapmuk explained that it was in realisation of this that the fund recently commissioned its model skills training centre which it built with technical assistance from the Institute of Technical Education Services in Singapore.
He said the fund also planned to set up 37 skills centres in realisation of the need to train middle level manpower in the national economy.
Also speaking on the occasion, the President of the Enugu Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture, Dr. Theo Okonkwo, said the ceremony provided Nigerians the opportunity to understand the workings of the ITF.
Okonkwo said the activities of the fund had enhanced the country’s capacity building for industrial growth.