Nigerian is to send volunteers to provide technical assistance to Brazil, Venezuela and Vietnam, the Director-General, Directorate of Technical Aid Corps (DTAC), Dr Pius Osunyikanmi has said.
Osunyikanmi said in Abuja that the volunteer programme, untill now, was restricted to African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries.
He said many countries that had declined participation in the scheme were now renewing their agreements with Nigeria to continue their enlistment on the programme.
“The Technical Aid Corps (TAC) scheme, which is now operational in many of the ACP countries, has continued to grow both in scope and size.
“Indeed, many more countries within the ACP region and beyond have indicated interest in the programme and due consideration is being given to their respective requests by the directorate.
“Countries like Venezuela, Brazil and Vietnam that are traditionally outside the ACP regions have all indicated interest in the scheme.
“Likewise, TAC recipient countries such as Vanuatu, Fiji, Trinidad and Tobago, and Commonwealth of Dominica, St. Kitts and Nevis that have earlier declined participation in the scheme are all renewing the TAC Country Agreement.
“South Sudan, the latest independent country in Africa, is working very intimately with the directorate to enable the scheme to take-off there in the nearest future”, he said.
Osunyikanmi said the directorate was giving consideration to all the countries that had requested for volunteers for technical assistance.
According to him, the widening scope and size of the programme is the result of diligent procedural management of its current recruitment.
The director-general explained that the scheme, which had been in operation since 1987, was designed as a foreign policy tool to garner goodwill for Nigeria.
Osunyikanmi said the scheme served as an enduring technical assistance scheme, which identified the use of the large pool of trained manpower available in Nigeria to enhance the socio-economic development of benefitting countries.
According to him, it is also to promote cooperation and understanding between the recipient countries and Nigeria.
1,500 volunteers are expected to be deployed to 32 countries as volunteers by the directorate in 2014.