By Suleiman Adamu, Sokoto
As a build up towards encouraging young Nigerians to be self reliant against over dependence on government for job, the Arewa Entrepreneurship Initiative (AEI) has set out as a gateway for young ones to realise their dreams with the inauguration of its Sokoto state chapter Executives.
No fewer than 60 state wide Exco and Coordinators heralded its take off to also be replicated across the 23 LGs.
Inaugurating the Executives and declaring open a workshop organised for them in Sokoto, former Nigeria’s Ambassador to Tanzania, Alhaji Sahabai Isah Gada who stood in for Senator Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko said what the state and Nigeria needed at a time as this, was a responsive and aggressive commitment to building the future of young Nigerians through initiatives that would develop their capacity to realising their dreams in trade and investment opportunities for sustainable gains and empowerment.
The theme of the workshop is ” Empowering Young People to Realise Their Dreams.”
According to Gada” we must realise that he world is fast changing in advancement that white collar jobs are becoming less attractive as entrepreneurial ventures dictate the phase of economic independence , self reliance and empowerment.
This , he noted” is the driver of individual economic prosperity”, pointing out that, ” through skills and knowledge acquired, entrepreneurship resilience would be realised among young Nigerian men and women.”
The former Envoy also observed that there has been significant growing youth population in Sokoto state and the north in particular with hidden potentials that if harnessed through beneficial initiatives, would advance a realistic results against possible risks for failing to take advantage of entrepreneurial initiatives.
Speaking , Director General / CEO of the Initiative, Aminu Bello ACY said the evolution of AEI was in view of the current realities that affects the dreams and aspirations of young Nigerians with the socio-economic potentials of making some difference for selves and
Bello observed that with the rate at which Sokoto state population was fast building up with larger proportion dominated by young people, by the year 2030, it would hit 8 million” the tendency is that, we will be more at risk as young men and women will face the barrier of not access the few windows of opportunities that would guarantee them equal and profitable returns or income pay.
” These challenges will further worsen their chances of fulfilling their potentials of access to employment , education and decision making opportunities”, he pointed out.
The Director General stressed that such initiatives as AEI would strengthen the horizon and inspire the spirit of young northerners and promote peaceful and prosperous society with desire to be economically independent and empowered in tune with global fortunes.
” The workshop is to further focus on vital and strategic aspects that will drive profitable response from decision and policy makers on entrepreneurship to ensure effective and efficient implementable solutions for the young ones to realise their dreams”, he said.
Also in his remarks, the BoT Chairman and Commissioner representing Sokoto state at the Federal Character Commission ( FCC), Alhaji Abdullahi Tambari Tafida said entrepreneurial drive was key in the realisation of the economic potentials in young ones .
However, Tafida pointed out that attention must be channelled to graduates to embrace and take up the task of realising their dreams through entrepreneurship venture.
According to him, their must be a systemic approach that would encourage them to develop the determination against the fear of the unknown so that the objects of the initiative can be realised.
The federal Commissioner who regrettably observed that the over N300bn CBN funds set aside for young Nigerians to access as loan for business take off upon presenting their certificates and other personal details as collateral, said they failed to take the advantage due to fears and lack of determination especially those who were nursing the dreams of becoming self reliant .
” With determination, you can access the funds at lesser interest rate”, while giving a case study to further inspire young ones.
He further disclosed that no fewer than 300 Sokoto graduates applicants request were on his desk seeking jobs.
” This is what the initiative drives to discourage among young graduates.We should discourage over dependence on government jobs”, he insisted.
Alhaji Tukur Alkali who also represented the Executive Secretary , Police Trust Fund, Alhaji Ahmed Aliyu Sokoto maintained that entrepreneurship was the sure way to fast track the economy as well transform the fortunes of commercial activities in line with the dreams of giving the young population the opportunity to stabilise selves and nation’s growth.
According to Tukur, ” we must not jettison our resourcefulness and age long trades and skills towards actualising our dreams for the young ones .
” We have enormous raw materials which the initiative can explore through inspiring the young ones for their participatory decision and venture”, he pointed out.
He commended the foresight of the AEI initiator , Bello ACY as well he Chairman National Advisory Council, Senator Wamakko whose foundation, Aliyu Magatakarda Foundation in collaboration with the Nigerian Entrepreneurship Initiative Project( NEIP) for driving the course for young Nigerians .