The Akufo-Addo administration has introduced a special initiative targeted at jobless graduates called the Nation Builders Corps (NBC).
In the 2018 Budget address, under the theme, “From Stabilization to Work; Putting Ghana to Work Again”, the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, said 100,000 tertiary graduates will be employed under the NBC in 2018.
Every one of Ghana’s 216 districts should be able to provide jobs for 462 graduates, the Minister said.
The NBC, which will be based in the office of the President, will focus on alleviating shortfalls in public service delivery.
Graduate unemployment is seen to be at critical levels in Ghana with data from the Institute of Statistics, Social and Economic Research (ISSER) of the University of Ghana, noting that only 10 percent of graduates find jobs after their first year of completing school.
ISSER’s research also indicates that, it may take up to 10 years for a large number of graduates to secure employment due to varied challenges.
The government believes the NBC programme will see a turn for the better as Mr. Ofori Atta said this step “will be a major government initiative to address livelihood empowerment and graduate unemployment to solve economic and social problems.”
“The focus of the initiative will be solving public service delivery in health, education, agriculture, sanitation and drive revenue mobilization and collection.”
NBC to support other gov’t targets
Like the Youth Employment Agency, which targets non-tertiary graduates, the NBC has a number of subsets which are connected to other major government targets and initiatives.
On the back of the Sanitation Campaign launch and the anticipated Sanitation Brigade, the Finance Minister noted that, the NBC has made provision for sanitation inspectors under a “Clean Ghana” Programme. These inspectors will focus on enforcing sanitation laws.
Trained nurses and other healthcare workers will provide health care to deprived and rural communities under a “Heal Ghana” module.
The 2018 Budget Statement made known government’s intent to ensure tax compliance, and NBC will be contributing to these aims with its “Revenue Ghana” programme.
Ghana currently has six million taxable citizens, but only 1.2 million are paying tax.
Tertiary Graduates under “Revenue Ghana” programme will “mobilize the youth to collect taxes that have been difficult to mobilize and enforce collection,” Mr. Ofori Atta stated.
There will also be “Teach Ghana” and “Feed Ghana” modules under this special initiative.
By: Delali Adogla-Bessa/citifmonline.com/Ghana