• News - North Central - FCT
  • Updated: May 18, 2023

NYSC At 50: Buhari Offers 65 Former Corps Members Scholarships, Jobs

65 former National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) participants have been given automatic employment in the Federal Civil Service by President Muhammadu Buhari, underscoring the scheme's countless achievements since it was founded 50 years ago.

The President who spoke at the NYSC 50th Anniversary Honours held at the State House Conference Centre on Thursday noted that 52 of the 65 recipients received the Presidential Honours Awards, while the remaining 13 were physically challenged ex-corps members recognized by the NYSC Hope Alive Program.

Buhari also announced that in addition to employment, both groups will receive scholarships to further their studies up to the doctoral level at any university of their choice within the country.

He further announced cash awards totalling N250,000 for each of the top award winners and N200,000 for all other award recipients, including the physically challenged ex-corps members, as part of the NYSC Hope Alive Program.

To assure adherence to the employment offer and the awarding of scholarships, the President issued a directive to the Head of the Federal Civil Service, the Federal Civil Service Commission, and the Minister of Education.

The event was also used by President Buhari to honour corps members from the honoured batches who died while serving the country in different ways.

“But for their transitioning, some might have been here today as part of the honorees. May God grant their souls peaceful repose. They remain our heroes and heroines.

"The nation shall continue to remember their sacrifices towards building a strong, indivisible, and egalitarian entity,” he said.

The President also expressed sympathy for ex-corps members who had suffered various degrees of injuries during their year of service, recognizing their tremendous sacrifices for the advancement of the country and assuring them that the country stands with them.

All Nigerians who have responded to the call for national service over the past 50 years were lauded by President Buhari for their patriotism and dedication to the scheme's mandate.

He emphasized that it has established itself as an interventionist organization with a basic mission to promote national unity throughout the nation, thereby eradicating ethnic tensions and divisions.

“Your labour shall not be in vain,” he said.

The President added: “The multiplicity of marriages contracted over the years by corps members, cutting across the boundaries of ethnicity and religion in no small measure, justifies my assertion.”

The founding father of NYSC, Gen. Yakubu Gowon (ret), was also appreciated by President Buhari for coming up with the concept of the corps and seeing it through to completion on May 22, 1973.

“The NYSC has continued to afford successive batches of corps members a veritable platform to make meaningful contributions in the various spheres of our national life,” he said.

The President praised the corps members in particular for battling the COVID-19 outbreak by manufacturing and distributing necessary supplies like face masks, hand sanitisers, and liquid soap as well as supplying food and other relief supplies to those in need around the country.

He praised them for maintaining their composure and neutrality while working as ad hoc staff for the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), especially during the general elections in 2023, since this improved the legitimacy of the electoral process.

Additionally, through beneficiary enumeration, President Buhari recognized the corps members' contributions to the effective implementation of social intervention programs including N-Power and the School Feeding Program.

“I hasten to state without equivocation that with the quality of youths such as these, the future of this country, which rests upon their shoulders, is guaranteed. I give kudos to my dear diligent, patriotic, and virile youths. You have done well, and the nation is proud of you.

“The success story of the fifty-year-old noble scheme will be incomplete without conspicuous mention of your outstanding contributions,” he said.

President Buhari pledged continuing government support for youth programs while acknowledging the critical role played by the NYSC Skill Acquisition and Entrepreneurship Development program in diversifying the national economy and moving it toward a more production-oriented paradigm.

He noted the N75 billion Nigeria Youth Investment Fund (NYIF) as one of the empowerment programs to support youth-related activities and build a better Nigeria.

The President praised the NYSC management for their work in generating revenue and urged them to continue their dedication.

He also recognized the support of the First Lady, Dr Aisha Muhammadu Buhari, who gave a well-equipped ambulance for the use of the NYSC Mobile Clinic and praised the Health Initiative for Rural Dwellers undertaken by the NYSC.

President Buhari urged people and corporate entities to imitate this act in order to increase access to high-quality healthcare, particularly in rural areas.

President Buhari stated that he has been "adequately briefed" on the subject of the continuing discussions regarding the need to reinvent the NYSC by establishing a trust fund and applauded the administration for the initiative.

He promised to back up any sincere efforts made to help the plan accomplish its goals.

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Deborah  Oyewole
Deborah Oyewole

A graduate of English Langauge with a passion for writing and editing. Ardent researcher and metic...

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