From Naabenyin Joojo Amissah, Cape Coast
The newly-elected Central Regional Secretary of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Mr Richard Takyi-Mensah, has urged unemployed graduates in the region to get registered with the Nation Builders Corps (NABCo) to help better their lot.
The Nation Builders Corps, according to Takyi-Mensah, must be seen as a policy intervention intended to control graduate unemployment, and also help them acquire practical experience.
Speaking to The Chronicle, Mr Takyi-Mensah said the programme has come to stay, and, therefore, any graduate who qualifies must take advantage and get registered in order to improve their living standards.
“I have heard a lot of arguments and commentaries about NABCo since it was launched by the President in Kumasi. In fact, some of the arguments are disheartening, but they will not deter the government,” he said.
“Because we are determined to end graduate unemployment, we shall remain focused and implement the policy, and very soon those who don’t seem to appreciate it will see it success,” he added.
Mr Mensah explained that the policy has no political correlation, and, therefore, appealed to every qualified graduate to consider the programme as a stepping stone to a greater height.
“Government does not intend to close employment of graduates in other sectors because of NABCo. Also, the initiative does not replace graduate employment by the government,” he explained.
He alleged that the National Democratic Congress (NDC) left behind a backlog of unemployed graduates during its eight years stay in government without implementing a single policy to curtail the situation. In his view, the high level of graduate unemployment could have been reduced to a significant number, if the NDC had instituted a plan while in government.
“I will plead that no graduate should buy the mischief and propaganda being peddled by the NDC, because their lack of direction in the fight against the canker is what has brought us this far,” he noted
On May Day this year, the President, Nana Akufo-Addo, launched one of his flagship programmes, Nation Builders Corps in Kumasi. The programme, which has seven distinct nodules, is open to all unemployed graduates who possess Diploma, High National Diploma (HND), Degrees and Masters. The seven modules are, Heal Ghana, Civic Ghana, Digitise Ghana, Educate Ghana, Feed Ghana, Enterprise Ghana and Revenue Ghana.
Each graduate is only eligible to register under only one of the seven modules depending on their studied programmes and would be entitled to a monthly allowance of GH¢700. Notwithstanding the relieve the programme would be expected to bring to the dozens of unemployed graduates, NABCO has been greeted with mixed reactions and protestations.
While some of the unemployed graduates have welcomed the initiative, others have questioned it relevance and sustainability.