The National Youth Service Corps has is taking fresh precautionary measures to safeguard Corps Members as insecurity widens across the country.
Consequently, the agency has taken the decision not to deployed Corps Members to any area that is facing security threat during its forthcoming 2021 Batch ‘A’ Stream Two Orientation Course.
It said the Scheme is in constant interaction with the security agencies and would therefore, not undermine the safety of any Corps Member.
NYSC Director-General, Brigadier General Shuaibu Ibrahim who stated in his address at the opening ceremony of the 2021 Batch’A’ Pre-Orientation Workshop held in Karu, Nasarawa State, said, “As the welfare and safety of Corps Members and Staff is part of the policy thrust of my administration, we shall continue to work closely with relevant shareholders to evolve strategies for the protection of all Corps Members and the enrire Camp community during the Orientation Course”.
He stated that the workshop would enable top management, collaborating partners and other critical stakeholders review the previous Orientation Courses with a view to improving the Scheme’s performance in subsequent exercises.
Speaking further, Ibrahim said the Scheme has conducted Orientation Courses amidst the challenges of COVID-19 through strict adherence to all the safety protocols.
“We worked closely with the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and State Ministries of Health in this regard”, he said.
He added that all the Orientation Camps have been put in condition that would allow seamless conduct of the exercise online with the approved COVID-19 prevention guidelines.
“However, we would use the opportunity of the workshop to, among other things, harness our experiences and explore the prospect of increasing camp capacity, without losing sight of the need to adhere strictly to COVID -19 safety protocols, as we learn to operate optimally under the “new normal”, Ibrahim said.
The Director-General thanked the Presidential Steering Committee on COVID-19, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, and State Ministries of Health for their support and guidance which contributed immensely to the successful execution of the previous Orientation exercises.
He also extended his profound gratitude to the Victim Support Fund under Lt Gen Theophilus Danjuma (Rtd) for its assistance to the Scheme, including the latest donation of sixty thousand COVID-19 test kits.
The NYSC DG, equally appreciated the Nasarawa State Government for granting approval for the renovation of Magaji Dan Yamusa Orientation Camp in Keffi, augmentation of feeding of Corps Members and Camp Officials during Orientation Course.
Also, the Andoma of Doma Kingdom, Dr Ahmadu Aliyu Oga Onawo was appreciated for releasing 16-hectare farmland to the NYSC for cultivation, which will have positive effect on food security in the country.
While declaring the Pre-Orientation Workshop open, the Nasarawa State Government showered encomiums on the NYSC Scheme for its roles in stemming the spread of Coronavirus in the country through the provision and distribution of different types of COVID-19 protective materials to the populace, while equally commending it over its role of fostering national unity and integration.
The State Governor, Engineer Abdullahi Sule who was represented by the Commissioner for Youth and Sports, Alhaji Othman Bala Adam commended the NYSC, led by Brigadier General Shuaibu Ibrahim for enhancing the visibility and relevance of the Scheme through transformational programmes and policies.
“I commend the effort of the NYSC Director-General, management team, stakeholders, NYSC officials and Corps Members towards enhancing the viability and relevance of the Scheme through evolving this transformational programmes and policies.”
“The inventions of COVID-19 protective materials such as facemasks, hand sanitisers, sample collection box, temperature detection device, including the medical team that has continuously been in the frontline during and after the lockdown in our medical facilities, will continue to be recorded as NYSC’s contribution to National development”, he said.
Governor Sule paid encomiums on Corps Members for their contributions to the health, education and rural infrastructural development of Nasarawa State.
He urged the workshop participants to use the opportunity as a strategy of keeping stakeholders abreast with new challenges and how to counter it.
The Governor reaffirmed the support of his administration to the Scheme especially in Nasarawa State, through the provision of conducive working environment, logistics, sustained welfare and security of Corps Members to enable them continue their statutory roles to the State.
The 2021 Batch ‘A’ Stream Two Pre- Orientation Workshop titled; Managing Corps Population in the Context of the New Normal”, had all the State Coordinators of the NYSC Scheme including FCT in attendance.
Others participants also include; Camp Directors, Camp Commandants-designate, representatives of the Nigerian Army, Police, Department of State Services, NDLEA, Federal Ministry of Health, Nigera Secirity and Civil Defence Corps, Citizenship and Leadership Training Centre, Red Cross among others.