ActionAids Nigeria, has urged Kogi State government to invest more in education and use it as a tool to curtail violence and extremism in the state.
Country Director of the organization, Mrs. Ene Obi stated this in Lokoja, on the sideline during this year International Youths Day organised in conjunction with the state chapter of National Youth Council of Nigeria, NYCN.
Mrs Obi who was represented by the Organization Director of Programme, Mrs. Tasallah, said, "For many years, youths and women in conflict prone areas have suffered several psychological and physical loss. Like most states in Nigeria, Kogi State has not been left out. Kogi state for example recorded an unemployment rate of 19.7 per cent in Q3 2018 and an underemployment rate of 24. 8 per cent in the period. This shows that there are plenty of our youths in the state who are seeking to be engaged.
"Actionaid Nigeria, having worked in Kogi State for over 10 years sees the youths as major catalysts of change and has taken keen interest in ensuring that they are protected from the influence of violence extremist and are properly engaged and equipped to contribute to the development of the state and the country at large.
"One major way to achieve this is through the promotion of quality and inclusive education for all. Education is not just a strong tool for building sustainable growth through human capital development but also a means to preventing violent extremism through engagement and empowerment of mind.
"It is important that in tackling this vulnerability, the number of out-of-school, unemployment and excluded youths within the star should be reduced to the minimal.
"I therefore employ mutual collaboration from all partners, citizens, youths group and stakeholders involved in the state to see education as strong tool to building a positive change in the state and ending violent extremism."