By Nofisat Marindoti
The Commandante of Osun Youth Empowerment Scheme (O’YES), Colonel Enibunkun Oyewole Rtd, has stated that the State Government of Osun under the leadership of Governor Rauf Aregbesola has changed the lives of thousands of youths in the state through the scheme.
Oyewole said this during a media chat with newsmen in his office in Osogbo on Thursday.
The O’YES Commandante noted that the scheme has helped the state to manage unemployment rate to a considerable manner, adding that the National Bureau of Statistics, in its publication rated Osun State to have the least unemployment rate.
Oyewole who stated that many O’YES cadets have been sent abroad for training in various skill acquisitions, noted that a sum of 3.6 billion naira is expended on the scheme annually.
He explained that the success of the 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 and consequently recommended it to the Federal Government and other states in the country.
The result, the Commandante said, is the Youth Employment and Social Support Operation (YESSO) and N-Power programme that was launched in Abuja, adding that about 23 states have sent delegates to the state to understudied the programme.
He said the scheme was established in 2010 out of the precarious effects of unemployment in the state while describing it as one the greatest achievements of Aregbesola in office.
“OYES was introduced to effect and affect life by putting an end to unemployment in the state. The youth have had a better life approach and positive attitudes through the job.
“Some of my cadets are landlords who have built their houses through the money earned from the scheme and over 22,000 indigenes of the state are in OYES in all the geographical zone.”
He also noted that over 42,000 youth have benefitted from the scheme, adding that peace, calm and good behavior have been restored in the lives of jobless youth who doesn’t have any job doing and has also served as additional multiple sources of income to those who are into business and other job in the state.
“The scheme has not just taken its roots, it has empowered over 40,000 youths with life changing skills top become better citizens.
“From their rustic pedestrian living, the volunteers have broken free from poverty to become employers of labour.
“With savings from their monthly stipend of ten thousand Naira (N10,000.00) per month per volunteer, it was shocking to discover how they have turned their meagre income into small and cottage scale business concerns with further assistance from their relations.”
“Osun Youth Empowerment Scheme (O’YES) cadets which is a revolving volunteer scheme designed to eliminate the frustration and paralysing effect of high and seemingly intractable youth unemployment pervasive in the state and country at large.
“It aims at equipping as many young men and women with positive work ethics and culture, self sustenance, resourcefulness and respect for the environment. It is designed to develop youths with character and competence.”
He however directed those who applied for OYES to go and check their names online, saying the portal had been opened and that the list of qualified applicant has been released.
The Commandante said training will starts in all the local government areas of Osun State on Monday for those whose name is among the successful applicant that came out.
He therefore thanked Governor Aregbesola for creating the scheme to butter the bread of Youths in the state.