An Assistant Professor of Entrepreneurship and Corporate Social Responsibility at the American University of Nigeria, Yola, Adamawa State, Dr Lukman AbdurRaheem, has called on Nigerian youths to see the COVID-19 pandemic as an opportunity to innovate and become job creators rather than job seekers.
Dr Lukman AbdurRaheem made the call during a Webinar organised by Involve Africa, a Pan-Africa Youth Organization in Lagos.
According to him, the youths need to take advantage of the various grants available online and secure them ahead of the post-COVID-19 era.
He said the youths should come up with viable business ideas that can be supported by governments, well-meaning Nigerians, Non-Governmental Organisations and religious bodies.
Dr AbdurRaheem said the government, on its part, needs to deploy more funds into entrepreneurship development as well as incubation centres, adding that “government should be the biggest buyers for startups.”
He also advised said the government on other measures to boost the economy and create more job opportunities for the youths.
“They need a realistic budget, cut off unnecessary spending, priority should be on value-adding sectors, salaries, relief and critical infrastructural development”.
“This is the time to take economic diversification seriously, the government need to support construction, manufacturing and more importantly the agricultural sector. The reliance on oil should come to an end,” he said.
While he commended the President Muhammadu Buhari government for halting rice importation, Dr AbduRaheem said the achievements recorded in local production should be consolidated by continuous improvement on the standards.
The Executive Director, Involve Africa, Salma Hassan, said the webinar was part of the organisation’s effort to keep African youths informed and prepared for the post-COVID-19 economy.
Involve Africa is a Pan-African youth-driven development organisation working to increase and strengthen young people’s involvement in governance processes, social progress and peacebuilding in Africa.
Its goal is to empower young Africans to play a critical role in Africa’s development by strengthening their participation in governance policy and processes, redirecting skills, intellect, resilience and energy to solve Africa’s governance and development challenges.
Source: Voice of Nigeria