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Why Nigerian youths should embrace entrepreneurial skills - Akanni Ashia

The continuous appeal for embracement of entrepreneurial skills training such
that transform people directly from being a job seeker to a provider is on the
increase nationwide. Meanwhile, individual with professional backgrounds and
qualifications are not left out in this crucial campaign for self-sustainability having
figured out the trend and growth of unemployment in Nigeria.
Mrs. Akanni Ashia popularly called Joke Murgan is a lawyer and an entrepreneur,
she was called to Bar in 2017. In her resolve to alleviate poverty and reduce rising
unemployment, she initiated a training centre for various skills acquisition
programmes. She is the C.E.O of JK Murgan Creative Hub Limited situated at
House 8, 1Y Road, FHA Junction, Airport Road, Opposite FHA Office, Lugbe, (FCT)
Abuja.
In this exclusive interview with the News Editor of National Moonlight Yusuf
Olayinka, Joke Murgan speaks extensively on the vision and mission of her
vocational and training centre, her profession and other vital issues.
Excerpts:

Can we meet you?
My name is Mrs. Joke Akanni M. Ashia Esq.
I am a trained lawyer, but I have always have passion for entrepreneurship
practice and various skills acquisition even before I took the decision to study Law at the prestigious University of Ilorin. So I would say the love I have for been a job creator through acquiring knowledge and passing it down to others has started way back. I graduated from the University and was called to the bar as a solicitor of the Supreme Court of Nigeria in 2017 and since then we have being moving on fine.

Tell us about your vocational training centre?
JK Murgan Creative Hub Limited was established on 22 nd December 2017, we were initially trading under the name Jokey Moore Exclusive that was registered on 21st October 2009 but we recently upgraded to a Limited Liability Company like I mentioned in the name earlier.

Why did you decide to set up the vocational centre?
The concept and initiative is derived from my humanitarian gesture. I always want to give the little I have back to the society and in my own way help the economy of Nigeria grow considering the issue of unemployment and youth restiveness which is on the increase in the society. I believe by setting up this centre and working closely with both Federal and State government, favorable policies would be further initiated such that would improve people’s lives generally.

Tell us about the training quality you offer?
The Centre is equipped with modern facilities, skilled and qualified teachers like I said we are into skills acquisition, trading and general merchandize. The center offers training in areas such as unisex fashion designing, catering services , baking of finger foods, interior decorations, event planning, makeover and gele tying, beads and accessories making, cosmetology services, home essentials, I mean soap making, such as Dettol, starch. We also offer DSTV installation services, sewing machine repairs. We sell Ankara; shoes and bags and we handle photography and cinematography projects.

How would you describe your patronage and achievement so far?
When we started, patronage was very low but now, it’s getting better. The centre
has trained up to 200 unskilled youths and women since inception at a token. We
have equally been able to secure job opportunities for some its graduates. I can
assure you that we rank top amongst vocational training schools in Nigeria.

What relationship does your vocational centre has with state governments in
Nigeria?
Recently, the Kwara State government through the Women Affairs Ministry
signed an MOU with the vocational training centre to train youths and women in
the State for productivity and efficiency. We have also dispatched proposals to
the Kebbi State government, Adamawa, Sokoto, Niger State and FCT respectively. Though, our training facility is a centre for now but we are currently in partnership with National Directorate of Employment (NDE), NYSC and the Abuja Enterprise Agency (AEA). They usually send trainees to our centre frequently.

What are your challenges?
Our challenges are funds and the school’s location but we are working round the
clock to improve on those area. The general economy condition in the country
seems to be the major factor affecting everybody.

How do you get funds to coordinate your centre considering the economy
situation in Nigeria?
We have been sustaining through money made from the vocational school since
we started, though we once approached a bank for loan but their conditions and
interest rate was too high and not favorable so we could not further the
transactions with them, since then we have been managing with our resources
judiciously. Our mission is to help the growth of the economy of our country that
is why we are encouraging people to learn skills to ensure security of their future,
but the present economy situation in the country is affecting us, students are
complaining of lack of funds to pay their various fees for their programmes but
with the look of things we hope for improvement and a brighter future for our
school.

How many students do you have in your school presently?
We currently have over 50 students all together in the school learning different
skills and taking different courses. We also have separate classes for students;
morning and afternoon classes with different timing for effectiveness.

What is your staff weight?
We presently have 22 staff which I am one of them. We have 18 qualified
instructors; eight of them are permanent staff while 10 are temporary. We have
one office assistant, one secretary, one cleaner and one security man. So as you
can see we are adding value to people’s lives at the same time creating a better
future for others through the numbers of staff that we equally pay.

What is your vision for the centre?
I would love to establish state chapters and annexes. I would also collaborate with standard vocational institutes across West Africa especially countries devastated by war and crisis. I would upgrade the centre to the status of institute in 2018 and would look forward to liaising with embassies and high ommissions to send some trainees to countries for exchange programmes. I would introduce skills acquisition programme in Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps in the North- East. The centre would also form partnership Nigerian Army Officers Wives Association (NAOWA), Nigerian Naval Officers Wives Association (NOWA), Nigerian Air force Wives Association (NAFOWA) Police Officers Wives Association (POWA) Defense and Police Officers Wives Association (DEPOWA), NURTW, RTEAN, NLC, NULGE and the National Council of Women Societies (NCWS). The centre shall affiliate with the office of the Wife of the Nigerian President as well as the governor’s wives forum to generally train women in order to be self-sufficient.
Why Nigerian youths should embrace entrepreneurial skills - Akanni Ashia Reviewed by Unknown on February 20, 2018 Rating: 5

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