Gen. Shuaibu and NYSC’s COVID-19 Engagement
By Tomori Uriel

The Director General (DG) National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), Brigadier General Shuaibu Ibrahim, is a man of excellence and a result-oriented leader.

A year after assuming office, Brigadier General Shuaibu Ibrahim has transformed the NYSC to be a leading institution in community engagement with stakeholders in Nigeria, especially during this era of Covid-19.

Ibrahim has also sanitized the NYSC mobilisation system. On assumption of office as the NYSC boss, he was confronted with the issue of mobilisation of unqualified persons with fake or questionable degree certificates. Having identified the sources of such certificates, for the first time in the history of the Scheme, he promptly convened a meeting with the Registrars of some African Corps Producing Institutions at the end of which far-reaching strategies were adopted to curb the trend.

The result has been heartening as many illegal institutions, mostly in the West African sub-region, were most of the phony certificates are procured, have been shut down.

Also, 65 fake Corps Members were apprehended during the 2019 Batch ‘B’ Stream Two Orientation Course and handed over to the security agencies for prosecution.

General Shuaib has engaged corps members productively, making them to deploy their ingenuities in producing and distributing palliative items free of charge to communities, as part of the NYSC Community Development Service (CDS) initiative.

For instance, in a bid to assist in curbing the spread of COVID-19, Corps members in the NYSC Garment Factory located in Minna, Niger State Capital, have donated 1,000 face masks to the State Government. This, it did with the consent of its host community as a developmental process.

In addition, NYSC Orientation Camps across the country were quickly prepared for use as isolation centres, just as the Corps Medical Personnel were sensitised and deployed to assist their senior colleagues in the medical field, in battling the pandemic which poses a formidable threat to humanity.

In Ogun State, the NYSC Secretariat has boosted the fight against the deadly COVID-19 scourge, especially in areas of sensitization of the public, and donation of liquid soaps, face masks and sanitizers to the State government. Items donated include 300 pieces of 600ml of liquid soaps, 636 pieces of 100ml of hand sanitizers, 1126 pieces of face masks and cartons of noodles.

Similarly, corps members in Kebbi State embarked on a fumigation exercise as part of their contribution towards preventing the spread of Coronavirus.

The corps members fumigated their lodges, the Arewa local government Secretariat, staff quarters, and the police station. The State Coordinator of NYSC in Zamfara, Namalam Mohammed Taura, has approved the grant for a Corps Member from legal aid Community Development Service Group to construct an automatic hand washing machine for the Secretariat.

In the same vein, NYSC Sokoto State has designed and fabricated specialised water flowing instrument for handwashing to fight against the COVID-19. In their contribution to the fight against the pandemic, corps members in Oyo State constructed a semi-automated hand washing equipment with soap dispensing mechanism and underground drainage system.

Likewise, corps members in Lagos, Taraba, Ebonyi, among other States have also donated similar relief items to various relevant institutions in the fight against the pandemic.

In Ekiti State, production and donation of covid-19 material to the state implementation and preventive committee. In Abuja, the FCT Corps Members used their skills in contributing to the effort to combat the Coronavirus.

The NYSC campaign in engaging a large number of Nigerian youth to be productive could be attributed to the training they undergo through the Skills Acquisition and Entrepreneurial Development (SAED) of the service.

If they end up becoming self-reliant, job-creators and successful entrepreneurs after their service years, then the present-day corps members have nobody to thank than their incumbent DG Brig. Gen. Ibrahim Shuaibu, who has effectively operationalized and empowered the SAED programme, in every necessary way.

Tomori Uriel
NYSC Member at PRNigeria Office, Abuja