The Acting Consul General of the United States Consulate General Office, Lagos, Deheab Ghebreab, has stressed the need for Nigerian youths to acquire entrepreneurial skills in order to help revive the nation’s economy.
She said this while receiving the first set of Young Business Leaders of Nigeria (YBLN) at the consulate multipurpose hall last Friday.
The group, established by Temitayo Etomi, an alumnus of the United States Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders, has engaged 20 randomly selected Nigerians in a six-week comprehensive leadership and entrepreneurship training programme.
Ghebreab, who reiterated the U.S. commitment to partnering with Nigeria to eliminate poverty, advised the participants to apply for U.S. fellowships and scholarships open to Africans for more knowledge to grow their businesses and impact others and reduce unemployment in the nation.
She said: “The expectation is to look at what one person can do and believe you can do it too. Then pledge right here and now to influence in a positive way, at least 10 other young people.”
Lauding Temitayo’s initiative to give back to her community what she gained in the U.S., she said: “She has really demonstrated what the Fellowship means, which is giving back and helping other young people. It is all about mentorship, networking and working hard to achieve your desired goal in life. Congratulations Temitayo, we are proud of you.”
Speaking, Temitayo said she quit her job with the Lagos State Signage and Advertising Agency (LASAA) upon returning to Nigeria to practice what she learnt about marketing consulting business.
The 33-year old entrepreneur, who currently employs and trains more than 100 Nigerians, advised youths to look out for opportunities and believe in themselves and their country to go far in life.
“This budding entrepreneurship programme focuses on creating employment for people across the country. So we have invested so much in these 20 people who are in their fourth week in this first series; and the only thing we want from them is to employ a minimum of five people by December 2016. We want to go one person at a time to reduce unemployment crisis in our country.
“Youths, believe in Nigeria. There are still good people doing good things. We need to shift away from being entitled and join in creating solutions. It is tough being an average unemployed Nigerian, but you have to understand that taking yourself out of that situation is your own responsibility not the government’s or society’s. So, you must keep faith within yourself and believe you can transform your country and that is the way change would come to Nigeria.”