Dangote Cement has said that no fewer than 245 youths from the 16 host communities at Ibese, Ogun, have been empowered with different skills since the company commenced operations in the area.
Plant Director, Dangote Cement, Ibese, Mr Azad Nawabuddin, in a statement issued on Sunday, said that the empowerment programme had significant impacted on the local economy.
Nawabuddin added that the company had also distributed starter-packs to 30 trainees, following a three-month intensive tailoring and fashion designing training for youths, in partnership with Industrial Training Fund (ITF).
He said that the training was in furtherance of the company’s community youth empowerment programme, designed to improve the economy of the local communities by making youths self-employed.
The plant director explained that the company had carefully designed its youth empowerment scheme to complement government’s efforts at meeting the employment expectations of the youth in the country.
According to Nawabuddin, the successful completion of the training marked another milestone in the journey of community investment by the company.
This, he said, was in line with the cardinal objective of contributing towards long-term improvement of the local communities by delivering and sustaining values to them.
“So far, 245 youths from Ibese plant’s host communities have been trained and empowered in different skills since the commencement of operations in Ibese, with significant impact on the local economy.
“The beneficiaries have joined the league of self-employed in our locality.“
This empowerment programme is another demonstration of the commitment of Dangote Cement Plc., Ibese plant, to improving the social-economic condition of the neighbouring communities.
“We are committed to continuous implementation of impactful social investments that will eradicate poverty and improve the standard of living in our host communities,” he said.
Nawabuddin urged the graduands to make effective use of the opportunity given to them to become entrepreneurs and, by implication, employers of labour by hitting the ground running.
“At Dangote, we are committed to implementing more meaningful programmes that will uplift our people, while hoping that you will reciprocate this good gesture by contributing your quota towards the good of the organisation and ensuring peaceful co-existence,” he said.
Also speaking, Commissioner for Community Development and Cooperatives in Ogun, Mr Hamzat Ganiyu, lauded the firm for its numerous programmes, which had helped the state government policy on economic empowerment for youths.
He urged the beneficiaries to turn the training opportunities provided by the company into viable means of livelihood.
The commissioner called on other business organisations in the state to emulate Dangote Cement by helping to reduce youth unemployment and poverty at the local level through worthwhile social investments.
“The state government will continue to provide conducive environment for businesses to thrive, as the private sector plays key role in the economic emancipation of the people of the state,” he said