The Project Director, GIS, Mr. Dennis Chukwu, who made the revelation in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State capital, on Friday, said 68 per cent of the beneficiaries were males, 31 percent females and one percent, vulnerable. He said the government would continue to improve the capacity of the programme to absorb more graduate applicants.
Chukwu, who was represented by an Information Officer, Mrs. Maryam Kayit-Akor, but had his address read by an Assistant Director, GIS, Mr. Vincent Ejemba, said over 35,000 youths had exited from the scheme since its inception about five years ago.
He said thousands of beneficiaries had secured jobs while many had secured credit facilities and grants including YouWIN grant to expand businesses they set up using the GIS stipends.
He equally said some of them had set up cooperative associations, some of which had transformed into small and medium enterprises, noting that rather than seeking jobs, they were now employers of labour.
Chukwu said, “As a government, we can boldly say that the purpose of setting up the GIS, which is to make unemployed graduates employable, is being achieved.
“However, as long as thousands of graduates still remain unemployed, we will continue to improve the capacity of the scheme to absorb more applicants. “It is also my hope that some years down the line, the GIS interns will galvanise different sectors, especially the non-oil sector, which is the new focus of the Nigerian economy.”