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Entrepreneurship programme for 250 youths commences in A’Ibom

From INI FRIDAY, Uyo

The third batch of ‘My Entrepreneurship Goal Programme (MEGP)’ for youths in Akwa Ibom’, announced by Governor Udom Emmanuel in response to the #EndSARS protest in the State, has commenced with 250 participants, AbeyaNews can report.

According to Governor Emmanuel’s Senior Special Assistant on Marketing and Brand Management, Mr Ime Uwah, the first and second batches of the programme had 187 participants each, while the third is targeting 250 youths.

Ime Uwah, Senior Special Assistant, Marketing and Brand to Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State

He explained that the programmes does not provide funding or start-up capital for participants but budget-based assistance like registration of existing businesses, access to grants and payment for specific skills acquisition, among others.

Speaking earlier today in Uyo, the State capital, Uwah stated that MEGP is purely a youth-based programme targeting existing businesses of about two years old, describing as transparent, the registration and selection processes for the programme..

He advised interested youths to apply online using the link provided, saying the programme which is done on a quarterly basis, was stalled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

He revealed that the proposed training for 3,000 youths in each of the three senatorial districts in the state per quarter was yet to commence, disclosing that the training would be handled by the Ministry of Trade and Investment.

“The Ibom three thousand has not started; it is with the Ministry of Trade and Investment,” he reiterated. “What we do as the director, marketing and brand management is the eligibility programme. The entrepreneurship programme has started and we are in the second week now.”

Uwah explained: “My Entrepreneurship GoalProgramme is targeting 250 participants. We did a pre-qualification interview. We look at people with existing businesses and also start-ups. By start-up we mean a year to two years, not at ideation level. That’s what we look out for during the pre-qualification interview.

“The process is transparent and there’s a link online people can access; apply online and you’ll be called for the interview. During the interview, what we want to know is that you’re in business and it has been there for a year or two.

“Our programme does not provide funding or start-up capital like that; we provide budget base assistance. In terms of funding, we assist, we provide information on available funds. We provide information through our network.

“For the two batches that we’ve done, we have a network of all the participants and these ones are going to be part of that network now.

“We pay to provide a specific skills accusation. Now is a basic entrepreneurial education. There’re some people that would want to go into creative art or ICT in case of web design, we have to pay for that specific skills that’s required.

“This is the third batch which is 250 while the first and second batch we’ve done about 187. We do it every quarter and we’re supposed to do it in second quarter of this year but because of COVID-19 we were not able to do it.

“That’s why we are doing it this last quarter and we will do it second and third quarter of 2021, so it is a continuous programme.”

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