Harnessing Local Resources Would Create Jobs – Youth Minister, Olawande

Minister of State for Youth Development, Ayodele Olawande, has charged stakeholders in Nigeria’s employment market to look inward and harness resources across local communities to generate employment.

The minister gave the charge on Wednesday while delivering a goodwill message at the third edition of the Lagos State Employment Summit held at the Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos.

Minister of State for Youth Development, Ayodele Olawande with Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu during Lagos Employment Summit held at the Eko Hotel and Suites.

The event organzed by the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF) brought together stakeholders in both the private and public sectors to discuss the modalities for harnessing public-private collaboration to enhance job creation.

Attended by dignitaries and important private sector players, including the Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwoolu; his deputy, Obafemi Hamzat; Founder of GTB, Fola Adeola, the summit served as a platform to reassess diverse job creation strategies and discuss the options for collaborative efforts between the private and the public sectors.

Olawande, while giving his goodwill message at the event, said local communities across the country have abundant resources that could be harnessed to create jobs and productively engage the youth.

“I’ll cite an example of a community called Idanre in Ondo State where I come from. Anyone conversant with Idanre would know they refine possibly the best palmwine anywhere in Nigeria. With the right value addition, there is a lot of jobs that can be created from bottling and marketing the palmwine in Idanre alone,” the minister said.

Emphasizing that almost every local government area in Nigeria has comparative advantage in one product or the other, Olawande called for a more intentional collaboration between all players in the employment market.

He said, “There is no way the government alone can achieve the difficult task of creating employment for our increasing youth population, the same way the private sector can also not do it alone. There is, therefore, the need for a deeper and deliberate collaboration in order to harmonise resources and human capital to deliver the much needed jobs.”

Participants who spoke at the summit applauded the job creation initiatives of the minister, particularly his intervention to re-skill the youth to fit into the emerging job market through his “1 youth, 2 skills” initiative.

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