Shuaibu Ibrahim, director-general of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), has played down concerns in some quarters that the scheme could be scrapped.
In 1973, Yakubu Gowon, former head of state, had set up the scheme as part of efforts to reconcile and rebuild the country after the civil war.
In the past few months, however, arguments over whether to do away with the scheme or not have intensified among Nigerians.
The house of representatives had earlier this year considered a bill seeking to scrap the scheme.
The ensuing debate over the matter has left some Nigerians, particularly those looking forward to participating in the scheme, worried.
But speaking in Abuja on Thursday, the NYSC DG dismissed fears that the scheme risks being scrapped.
Ibrahim said the NYSC is crucial in the course of building a united country.
He added that the benefits of the scheme far outweighs the challenges.
Buttressing his point, Ibrahim said there are some remote communities in the country who rely on the posting of corps members to maintain smooth running of their health or education system.
In May, the NYSC DG had said the scheme is not a waste of time, adding that it is “critical to the unity of the country.”
This was about the same time when Sa’ad Abubakar, the Sultan of Sokoto, said that those calling for the scrapping of the scheme do not mean well for the country.
“I heard there are efforts for the scrapping of the NYSC scheme. I assure you that those behind that struggle do not mean well for this country,” he had said.
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