He said creating jobs and economic opportunities for millions of unemployed Nigerians will be vital.
Presidential candidate of the People's Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, has promised to create 3 million jobs for every year of his tenure if elected president in the 2019 presidential election.
The former vice president disclosed this in his policy document made public on Monday, November 19, 2018.
Under his Job Creation and Entrepreneurship Development plan, Atiku said his government would "target the creation of up to 3 million self and wage-paying employment opportunities in the private sector annually".
He said he would also "launch a new, more efficient, cost-effective and sustainable national Entrepreneurship Development and Job Creation Programme", "target all categories of youth, including graduates, early school leavers as well as the massive numbers of uneducated youth who are currently not in schools, employment or training", "create incubation centres, clusters and industrial/commercial hubs to provide a market place for MSMEs and SMPs", and "champion the repositioning and streamlining the activities of the existing Federal and State Government Job Creation Agencies".
The former vice president noted that creating jobs and economic opportunities for millions of unemployed Nigerians will be vital both for reducing the pool of easy recruits for violent groups and reducing underlying grievances that feed the conflict.
To arrest the problem, he said his government would stimulate the growth of the Nigerian economy with a view to enhancing its capacity to provide opportunities for the economically active population and participate in the economy through wage or self-employment.
2019 presidential election
While next year's election, scheduled for February 16, 2019, is expected to be keenly-contested between Atiku and President Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC), they both face competition from other candidates including Donald Duke of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), Kingsley Moghalu of the Young Progressive Party (YPP), Obiageli Ezekwesili of the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN), Fela Durotoye of the Alliance for New Nigeria (ANN), and Omoyele Sowore of the African Action Congress (AAC).
Others are Tope Fasua of the Abundance Nigeria Renewal Party (ANRP), Eunice Atuejide of the National Interest Party (NIP), Adesina Fagbenro-Byron of the Kowa Party (KP), Chike Ukaegbu of the Advanced Allied Party (AAP), Hamza Al-Mustapha of the People's Party of Nigeria (PPN), Obadiah Mailafia of the African Democratic Congress (ADC), and many more.
79 candidates will contest in the election, the highest number ever in Nigeria's electoral history.