The director-general of the National Youth Service Corps, Brigadier Gen. Shuaibu Ibrahim, said corps members could be trained to serve as security forces, as an alternative in war cases.
Ibrahim made this known, during a “Sunrise” Dairly programme on Channels TV, while reacting to the moves to scrap NYSC scheme, which has remained compulsory for all Nigerians who graduates before the age of 30.
The NYSC boss said, “Corps members are on reserve. They are part of the national defence policy of the country. So, where there is serious war, our Corps members are educated, they are knowledgeable and they can be trained; you see the drill and so on.
“You can imagine within the short three weeks in the orientation camps, the Corps members are molded. They are like soldiers. You see female Corps members blowing the army horn, playing with the military band.
“So, if not for the knowledge, where are you going to mobilize such young Nigerians to train them quickly to put in their best for the country? So Corps members are on reserve. They are also parts of the national defence policy”.
He said, the NYSC was concerned about the security of corps members, adding that it was why they have been advised not to move around at night.
Ibrahim argued that the NYSC had become more important than ever; in the fact of the rising calls for secession. He advised the Corps members not to travel outside the State or the country, without the permission of the State coordinator.
Additionally, he noted that members have been asked not to travel after 6pm, citing that they could sleep over at any corpers’ lodge instead of making late travels.
The NYSC boss also maintained that the security in the country was not enough reason to scrap the scheme, adding that till date, 75 percent of the corps members were still serving in rural areas across the country. He, however, said he had proposed a National Youth Trust Fund, through which loans could be given to corps members to start businesses after completing the mandatory program.
Ibrahim concluded that the scheme has been able to fooster national unity and cohesion, adding that many corps members had found love in the various orientation camps and married.
Ijeoma Njoku reporting, Obinwannem News | June 3, 2021