Since 13 April 2018, a delegation of the Dortmund, Germany-based association AfricanTide Union e.V. has been in Yenagoa, the capital of the Nigerian state of Bayelsa. Although the region, situated in the Niger Delta, has high oil and gas reserves, the population suffers from high levels of poverty and unemployment. Many people therefore are fleeing the region, even to Europe.
AfricanTide Union is committed to creating perspectives for youths. A training centre for the construction trade modelled after the German dual-training system is being set up in Yenagoa. “We want to offer people here the best training opportunities, that’s why there is a dual training after the German model,” says Dr RosaLyn Dressman, chairperson of AfricanTide Union.
Within 12 months, a total of 200 young people will receive certified training, for example, as a roofer, mason or solar technician, based on the German training system. The instructors are from Germany.
“At the moment, we are looking for craftsmen to join us in the adventure of Nigeria,” says Norbert Tschirpke, project coordinator at AfricanTide Union. However, reservations about Nigeria among many Germans cannot be denied. In Germany, many only think of Boko Haram – but only a small part of the country of nearly 200 million inhabitants is affected by the insurgency. In addition to their wages, the German trainers receive free meals and lodging. In addition to a technical education, good English skills are required of the trainers.
In Nigeria, AfricanTide organizes contacts with local companies as potential employers for the students. In this way, young people not only receive good training, but also a career perspective. There is labour shortage in the country. “Nigeria has tremendous economic potential. But that benefits only few. Education is here, as everywhere else, the key to success,” says RosaLyn Dressman.
Paradox: On the one hand, hundreds of thousands of people leave the country every year – on the other hand, major construction projects are being implemented by foreign workers from Europe and Asia. This is slowly changing now.