By Ifeanyi Olannye
Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State has underscored the importance of skill acquisition in the fight against unemployment and general poverty in the country.
Okowa said this when the Police Officers Wives Association (POWA) in the state, led by the wife of the Commissioner of Police, Hajia Aisha Hafiz-Inuwa, visited him at the Government House, Asaba.
He said that skill acquisition was the way out of unemployment and acute poverty, currently facing the country.
He commended members of the association for their philanthropic gestures toward the overall development of society.
The governor said that his administration had continued to empower youths in the state in order to make them self-reliant.
“We have continued to make skill acquisition a state policy because we realised that it is the only way to get out of the unemployment conundrum that we have found ourselves as a nation.
“In the last five years, we have ensured that we redirect the minds of our youths towards skill acquisition and we give them starter-packs to enable them to stand on their own.
“We have also revitalised technical education in the state to give our youths more veritable platforms to acquire skills,” he said.
The governor thanked POWA for its role in curbing the spread of COVID-19 pandemic in police barracks in the state.
“I know it is not easy attending to most families these days because the economy is getting more challenging.
“But, I am glad that in spite of these challenges you have continued to reach out to people through this association.
“The best way to help the bereaved families is to help them acquire skills and I am glad that you are going in that direction.
“Anything that helps to empower women is good for us because when you empower a woman you have empowered the family.
“Your skill acquisition programme for your members is good and deserves encouragement because it will go a long way to help those police families who lost their husbands as breadwinners in the course of duty,” Okowa said.
Earlier, Hafiz-Inuwa lauded the governor for his giant strides in creating young entrepreneurs through skill acquisition programmes across the state.
She regretted that some police officers lost their lives during the EndSARS protests, leaving family members to bear the heavy loss of their breadwinners.
Hafiz-Inuwa said that POWA was also setting up a skill acquisition programme to train women in catering, tailoring/fashion design, soap making, bead making, fish/poultry farming and hair dressing, among others.
She sought the directive of the governor for the inclusion of POWA members in the state’s skill acquisition and empowerment programmes.