The Cross River state government has signed a Memorandum of Understanding, MoU, with Skyrun International Company, a China-based firm, to train the requisite manpower in the core technical needs of the state.
Signing the pact on Wednesday in Calabar, the Cross River state governor, Prof. Ben Ayade represented by the Permanent Secretary, General Services and Administration, Mrs. Elizabeth Etu, thanked the Chinese firm for their bold steps to partner the state which she noted was in a hurry to be industrialized.
According to Ayade, “Your partnership in the area of human capital development as well as technology transfer to our teeming youth will go a long way in empowering them and contribute immensely to the actualization of our deep vision.”
On his part, the Financial Controller of Skyrun International, Mr. Li Yangtua, who spoke through an interpreter, lamented the dearth of technical skills in the state and country at large.
He promised to honour the terms of the agreement at ensuring that beneficiaries of the scholarship training programme are fully supported to acquire the necessary skills in the selected areas of needs.
“We are proud to partner Cross River State Government in the area of human power development and will do our best to deliver on this promise as part of our corporate social responsibility,” he said.
Also speaking, the National Coordinator, Nigeria-China Business Council, Chief Matthew Uwaekwe maintained that the essence of the bilateral agreement was to give Cross Riverians and indeed Nigerians the opportunity to tap from the wealth of technological advancement in China and become employable to better their lot back home.
According to Uwaekwe, “My joy and passion in pushing this project is to see a new Nigeria where youth are sought after because of the specials skills they acquire to tackle any task like their contemporaries in developed societies.”
On the choice of Cross River for the pilot scheme, he explained: “I have seen some enthusiasm in Governor Ben Ayade and members of his cabinet in ensuring manpower development of youth in areas of need and I want to make sure that this programme is sustained as our contribution to the economic and educational development of the state and Nigeria at large.”
Uwaekwe further noted: “If we train our youth and make them self-reliant instead of giving them handouts, all these vices associated with unemployment and restiveness will be a thing of the past in this country. Our youth needs to be empowered economically through skilld and technology acquisition.”
The Director-General, Cross River State Scholarship Board, Dr. Godwin Amanke explained that the MoU seeks to address specific interest of the state geared towards industrialization and making it not to rely solely on the federal purse.
”His Excellency is interested in training specialised skills in the core areas of needs which include skills for the design and construction of high rise buildings, the superhighway, bridges, technology, underwater fabrication and welding, computer technology and engineering,” the DG hinted.
The Financial Controller, Skyrun International, Mr. Li Yangtua signed on behalf of the Chinese firm while Amanke signed for the state and co-signed by the National Coordinator and Chief Executive Officer of Nigeria-China Business Council, Uwaekwe.