Governor Rauf Aregbesola has said Osun State has the lowest index of unemployment in Nigeria because of the youth engagement programmes he initiated, urging the youth, therefore, to vote for the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Aregbesola made the comment while speaking with newsmen in Osogbo, after the fitness walk organised for the newly absorbed 20,000 youths into the Youths Empowerment Scheme (O-YES).
“What you are witnessing today, the O-YES scheme, started in 2010/11, 100 days after our inauguration and we are still running it.
“Because we are not just a conventional administration like the previous governments, we have designed and empowered our young ones to cater for the needs of the people.
“It is clear that no government has the capacity to employ all youths, but we have, through the O-YES scheme, created opportunities that will engage and take the youths out of vices. Two-thirds of youths in the O-YES are either in one employment or the other or self-employed.
“This explains the results of all surveys, political, social, undertaken nationwide which throw up the fact that Osun has the highest index of happiness, lowest unemployment rate in Nigeria, as well as being the 7th largest economy in the country,” the governor said.
Aregbesola, who boasted that no any family, regardless of party affiliation, had not benefited from O-YES programme, said Osun had set a pace for others, especially in the area of youth empowerment.
According to him, success of the OYES programme attracted the attention of the World Bank, which studied it and certified it to be a viable and sustainable solution to the problem of youth unemployment in Nigeria.
Aregbesola, therefore, enjoined the youths to canvass vote for the APC, and to vote for the party’s candidate, Gboyega Oyetola, come September 22, 2018.
Oyetola, who joined the governor for the fitness walk, said the O-YES was a laudable scheme which he intended to keep and improve upon if elected governor.
“The scheme has taken, cumulatively, 80,000 youths off the streets and provided them with a platform to do something productive.
“The state is very peaceful because the youths are engaged and because they have something to do, they are not vulnerable. The government is encouraging the youths through the scheme to embrace hardwork, shun vices and also remove vulnerability.”
Oyetola assured the people of the state, that the programme would be sustained.
The head of the O-YES programme, Mr. Enibukun Oyewole, lauded the state government for setting up the scheme which, he said, had transformed the lives of lots of youths in the state.
He noted that a lot of the O-YES cadets had been sent abroad for various skills acquisition training, adding that about N3.6 billion is expended on the scheme annually.
Meanwhile, hundreds of residents have trooped out in Osogbo for treatment in the free medical mission organized by Oyetola.