Prof. Ayobami Ojebode, a lecturer at the University of Ibadan, on Thursday urged Nigerian graduates to invest in themselves through human capital development and creativity for a better life.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Ojebode stated this at the 34th edition of the convocation lecture of The Polytechnic, Ibadan.
Ojebode, who spoke on the topic, ‘The Dream, Challenges and Reality of the Contemporary Nigeria for Fresh graduates,’ said graduates must be well informed and harness technology to their advantage.
He highlighted the challenges and reality of the economic situation in the country, adding that the present administration’s policy if well implemented will bring succour in the long run.
“The Economic Recovery Plan of President Muhammadu Buhari administrati, on is envisioned to have the potential of leading to better economic performance under certain conditions, with emphasis on industrialisation and agricultural development.
“The Economic Recovery Growth Plan may on the long run impact and protect the economy from the shocks it experiences as the prices of crude oil undulate. There is hope, but then there are also apprehensions,” he said.
Ojebode enumerated effectsn of unemployment on some of who are personality
He urged employers in the country to stop complaining about the poor quality of the Nigerian graduates but to invest in graduate training.
“Employers and potential employers must come out that exploitative illusion and begin to invest in graduate training.
“Expecting graduates to serve your organisation without an in-house training is like trying to reap where you did not sow.
“Graduates are like hardware computers; sound and strong as a computer may be, it does not begin to run your staff salary programmes or your results computation the moment you buy it,” Ojebode said.
The don however charged graduates to fully prepare and develop themselves so that the labour market would become a true market, where people of equal status meet.
He said “We should work towards a labour market that empowers job seekers to negotiate and make choices, that is what a true market is and that is what our national labour dream should be, not just about fighting for minimum wage.”
Ojebode said graduates should maximize the use of their smartphones to create opportunities for themselves.
“To survive this reality of contemporary Nigeria, the graduate must be well informed: what do you do with your phone beyond idle chat and online gossip about politicians and popstars? What newspaper are you reading?
“Despite all I have said about our politicians, how many people here know that the Federal Government of Nigeria has a business support project reputed to be among the most transparent in recent times?
“I am referring to the GEM project which has transferred millions in Grant’s to over 950 businesses. How many know of the Tony Elumelu Foundation giving out millions of naira to young people who can demonstrate creativity and serious mindedness.
“Right this week, that Foundation awarded about 1.7 million naira each to 2,100 young people as grants to start their own businesses. “And, this is just one of the several foundations in Nigeria doing such things,” Ojebode said.