The minister of information and culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has said that the ministry will leverage on the cultural industry of the nation to employ unemployed Nigerians, especially the youth.
He said that the federal government has earmarked N500billion in the 2016 budget to help young people who intend to acquire skills and trade.
“What we have decided to do is to cooperate with all states and ask each state to give us 10 cities in their state, 10 festivals and 10 cultural industries”, he said.
He spoke during the inauguration of the “One Lagos Fiesta’’ at Agege Stadium, Lagos, organised by the Lagos State government to enliven the New Year crossover celebration.
In a statement made available to LEADERSHIP yesterday, the minister said, “I can assure you that by January 2016, when we will start rolling out our programmes, we will be able to mop up as many unemployed youths as possible using the cultural platform.’’
He stated that with each state of the federation giving 10 festivals, “we can have 360 festivals plus another five in Abuja making 365 festivals in Nigeria.
“This will mean that for every day, there will be a festival taking place in one part of Nigeria,’’ he said.
Mohammed said that the idea would enable Nigeria to have a compendium of cultural festivals and dates.
He added that the compendium would be sent abroad to intimate people with the festivals available in the country at a particular time.