By Sabiu Kabuga
The Nigerian Army has trained over 300 dependants of army personnel at 20 Mechanized Battalion Barack, Serti, Taraba State in various skills acquisition to enable them become self reliant.
The beneficiaries were presented with materials and machines to start the businesses they have learnt.
The skills acquisition and empowerment programme for unemployed youths and women living in the Nigerian army barracks was conceived by the Nigerian Army Officers’ Wives Association (NAOWA) and sponsored by the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai.
Speaking Friday at closing ceremony of the 2-week skills acquisition training for the 303 first beneficiaries of the army initiative at the Serti Barack, the Chief of Army Staff, Yusuf Buratai described the scheme as a ‘very big morale booster for the soldiers and thier family.’
Buratai who was represented at the occasion by the Commander 23 Brigade, Brig. Gen. Benson Akinroluyo explained that: ” The soldiers especially those in the frontline in crisis areas in the country cannot be professionally responsive if they are worried about the welfare of their families back home.”
The Chief of Army Staff maintained that ‘only a well-motivated soldier without any distraction from his family can be well dedicated and committed to duty.”
On her part, the NAOWA National President, Ummul-Kulsum Buratai represented by Mrs. Olasimbo Akinroluyo said the programme was timely considering the Federal Government efforts towards discouraging the importation of foreign goods and promoting local content.
The beneficiaries were trained in areas such as; tailoring and fashion design, soap and cosmetics making, foot wears, ICT, hair dressing and catering services.
143 sewing machines, 77 bags of soap making chemicals and materials, 8 Bench Grinder machines, 14 laptops, 21 Hair Dryer and set of rollers and pins as well as 40 local ovens and mixers were shared free of charge amongst the 303 participants.