FUOYE don: Investment in education, youth devpt crucial to end poverty, economic instability

By Nudoiba Ojen

A Professor of Microbiology at the Federal University Oye-Ekiti, Ekiti State, Prof. Olubukola Oyawoye, has urged Nigerian government for more investment in education and youth development.

This, Oyawoye said, would make it possible for Nigeria to reach greater heights in achieving the aim and aspirations of its founding fathers.

The don said education should be seen as a wealth creation process, adding, “If the people are educationally equipped by the government, the issue of threatening poverty and instability of the economy will be tackled among our youths”.

She spoke during the 4th Nigerian Leadership Colloquium with the theme “Mistakes Nigeria Made”, to mark Pastor Itua Ighodalo’s 63rd Birthday held at the Trinity Church, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria.

Oyawoye, a lead discussant, while responding to the speech of the Chairman, General Ike Nwachukwu (rtd), alluded to the general mistakes of committed by Nigerians either by omission or commission.

She harped on the need for more investment in education that would put the country among other self-sufficient ones in feeding the citizens, technology savvy youthful population, mismanagement of funds, needless castigation of one another, etc

The former Commissioner in Osun State emphasized that the government, corporate bodies, and even religious organizations should take a deeper interest in small-scale enterprise for the Nigerian youth.

She said, “Nigeria is blessed with a youthful population requiring serious engagement. The best way we can engage our youths is through an encompassing Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSME).

“Already there’s a Federal Government agency, the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) saddled with this responsibility. This agency should be empowered to focus more attention on youth development”.

The award-winning Prof. Oyawoye was emphatic on the need for Nigerians to have a rethinking of their ways and thoughts toward redirecting the country to the path of greatness.

Another discussant, Dr Reuben Abati, who traced Nigeria’s mistake to the 1914 amalgamation of the northern and southern protectorates, encouraged Nigeria and Nigerians to return to the table to discuss the Nigeria question for the harmonious relationship among the federating units.

The Chairman of the occasion, General Ike Nwachukwu (rtd), in his remarks, enumerated what Nigerians should term as mistakes made in nation-building, saying what Nigeria might consider as mistakes made to include political, economic, security, and social.

The keynote speaker, Mr Atedo Peterside, a Nigerian entrepreneur and investment banker, whilst drawing from his participation in the 2014 National Conference, highlighted nine points he considered to be the mistakes made in Nigeria’s quest for development.

Peterside listed them to include the inability of politicians to curb the excesses of their supporters, religion in politics, lack of proper conflict resolutions, destruction of standards in civil/public service and enthronement of injustice.

The celebrant, Pastor Itua Ighodalo, while appreciating the chairman, keynote speaker, discussants and the audience, implored every Nigerian to believe in Nigeria.

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