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Unilorin VC timely advice

By Hanafi Wahab

Felicitation and congratulations to the present crop of students who graduated from their various fields of studies with different categories of results from all the universities and other institutions in the country.

Luck in this wise is the game changer, the two sides of the coin will definitely come to play in this wise.  I leave my encomium till the next time when opportunity avails itself.

In his maiden address to the graduating students on the occasion of the 33rd convocation of the University of Ilorin.  The new Vice-Chancellor, Professor Suleiman Age Abdulkareem on the theme 'life has just begun'. 

  Inter-alia advised the graduates to promote ingenuity to eradicate joblessness.  In other  words, the learnered professor was silently telling the new future leaders that, they were coming into this uncertain world where things are like a mirage; that is, things are not the way they soon, sighting from the 'campus' eyes.
The graduands are being told to be job creators and not job seekers.

It is no more a secret that unemployment is one of the major problems of the countries of the world but that of Nigeria is seemingly exceptional, may be our high population of 'employment age' coupled with lack of ingenuinity in creating jobs are some of the factors responsible for this.

Only a very few well connected number of these graduates through some outside influence like godfathers and mothers among others may likely have gainful employments.

The call by the No. 1 student of the university, the learned vice-chancellor is more than apt with his address, because it is still not satisfying that our teeming educated youths are jobless and daily roam the streets of our major towns and cities with their certificates going from one ministry to another looking for non existing jobs while passing by ignored viable jobs in the vicinity.

University education they say, is not only to produce job seekers but job creators'.  This is a truism, going by the facts that jobs abound in all the sectors that make up the components of the entire country, it is quite unfortunate that Nigerian youths especially the learned ones are always found involved in various frauds, like 419, or Yahoo and other internet related offences.

Asides this, many are arrested at the various international airports across the world for trafficking on cocaine and other illegal drugs were mainly young and able bodied men who could be gainfully employed, while some had been grossly engulfed or obsessed in the 'rich-quick' syndrome.

In the agricultural sector for instance, job seekers have many fields to choose from , there is the subsistence farming which is being subscribed to minimally by all and sundry but there are opportunities also in the mechanized and commercial farming which I believe will attract the attention of our graduates, although these two need government assistance, and flickers on these from our various governments have been seen.

Other areas in the agricultural sectors like irrigation, fishing, poultry, snail, piggery, grass cutters, hare and cattle rearing among others are potential jobs with good income to match.

Block making industries are other avenues for not only job creation but source of good income, there should be room for two, three or more people to come together to form partnership for mass production.

Over the years, our first ladies have variously created different empowerment programmes for women and children; just of recent, the wife of Kwara State Governor Deaconess Omolewa Ahmed, launched one of these programmes, these programmes are highly appreciated.

Gari making industries abound around the country, bread making, soap making, tie and dye, basket weaving, soap, hairdressing, tailoring, catering, barbering, shoe making, shampoo, starch and even chalk making are some of the efforts of these our empowerment programmes, these efforts are being complimented by our religious bodies, cooperate entities and individuals; Kudos to all of you, however, more is needed.

'One thing is to provide medicine to an ailment but another is for the patients to use same'.

I hope these our leaders of tomorrow will not be complacent and egocentric even our various governments have also been looking inward for other sources of income, no more relying on the fluctuating petroleum world market with its attendant swindling petrol dollars, and for those who do not have any handiwork or trade to seize of this opportunity and engage themselves; who knows their lifeline may be, lie in wait for them there;   After all, education is only an avenue for knowledge exposure and social connections.

The government should intensify efforts at providing enabling environments for ingenuity to eradicate joblessness as enunciated by the learnered academician perhaps a mechanic village, as created by some states, should be emulated by other state governments with federal government backing, this time on a larger scale i.e. A mini mechanic city to accommodate technology graduates in the motor mechanic field for any brand of motor vehicle repairs, others to be included are auto electrical rewires, battery chargers and car sprayers, among others, with good incentives to attract intending patronisers, this will not only provide good employment but steady income.

In the power sector, solar plants could be established through public private partnership and graduates in the related field could be taught to practically assemble same, for mass production at lesser prices.  This brings good income and power to other electricity users in their various fields of endeavours.

Job opportunities also abound in the other sectors like industry, education, health, transportation, housing, road networking, others include telecommunication where Information and Communication Technology (ICT)  is en-vogue (the order of the day,) computer repairs, hard and software repairs, computer assembling, power point presentation, even web designing and corel-draw are probable areas of employment for some graduates, any computer village in the cities will explain this  better.

Government should de-emphasise important of certificate and encourage ingenuity, the last technology exhibition held this year at Abuja with the science and technology ministry awarding certificate and prizes to deserving innovators in technology is a welcome development and must be sustained.

This is a distinct departure from what obtained in the yester years where for instance during the Shagari regime, a prototype solar car was exhibited and alluded to a Nigerian as the builder at a trade fair held at the Tafawa Balewa Complex Race course in Lagos, this was in the early 80s, praises and encomiums were poured on this individual’s effort at creativity which gave a pseudo-hope to the engineers with the believe of a good future but Alas! nothing came out of it more than three decades after, this and other good examples abound, rubbished into the trash bin of history.

I sincerely congratulate all the graduates of this session starting from my little sweet daughter, AbdWahab Kafayat Ajoke to all other known and unknown ones.  You all deserve this and other encomiums for having to endure the rigour of schooling and the ability to scale the unsavouring hurdle to pass your exams in flying colour.

May the future be a smooth riding for all of you, as you must have envisaged.
Unilorin VC timely advice Reviewed by Unknown on October 23, 2017 Rating: 5

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