Dr. Bernhard Schlagheck, German Ambassador to Nigeria, says the German Government invests 50 million Euros in a year in the country for vocational training.
Schlagheck spoke in Abuja on Friday during the graduation ceremony of eight apprentices in technical facility management of the German Dual Vocational Training (DVT) in partnership with Nigeria.
“ The German Government has a whole range of activities in the country in various states and we invest 50 million euros in vocation training in Nigeria in a year,’’ he said.
DVT system is the commonest form of vocational training in Germany. “Dual” in this context means a combination of practical, on-the-job training and theoretical education at a vocational school, ensuring a proper balance of theory and practice.
The project is expected to end in December 2018 but Schlagheck said negotiations were on with the Nigerian Government to extend the programme.
Mr Stephen Awoyele, the Coordinator of the project, said the dual vocation consisted of two core elements — the interdigitation of one third theory and two thirds practice.
Awoyele said the apprentices were trained in four professional areas –industrial electronics, industrial mechanic, technical facility management and office administration.
He said it was the second batch of apprentices in technical facility management who graduated.
Awoyele said the project was faced some challenges ranging from lack of company support for apprentices, trainees’ dedication during the training, among others.
“We will like to encourage companies to accentuate the In-Company Hands-on training to enhance the skills of the apprentices to carry out assessments in the services and product based on the DVT curriculum,’’ he said.
Mr Tony Ejinkeonye, President, Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said the training would impact on the fortunes of member companies as well as the entire economy of Nigeria.
Ejinkeonye said the project started in March, 2015, was initiated by the chamber and Giessen-Friedberg with a view to adding impetus to vocational education quality in the country.
He said “the apprenticeship scheme is used widely in Germany and it has over the years contributed to the success story being recorded in that country’s manufacturing sector.’’
Ejinkeonye advised the apprentices to take the acquired knowledge, skill and discipline back to their companies and apply them in their jobs.
Mr Joseph Ari, Director-General, Industrial Training Fund, said the programme was a conveyor driver for youths from industrial trade skilled in their place of primary assignment and to boost the Nigerian economy.
Ari, represented by Mrs Rhoda Samande, Head of Admin of the Fund said the programme should be extended beyond the 2018 date so that more youths could benefit from such training.
Mr Enogela Passion, a representative of the graduating apprentices, said they would always follow the procedures and standards learnt during the training.
Passion said that the issue of standard had been a big challenge in the country and promised that they would also impart the knowledge in other youths.
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