Vice President of the Financial Advisory Unit at Africa Finance Corporation (AFC), Mr. Usman Muhammed AbdulRazaq, has identified prioritisation of quality education and skills acquisition in the national education curriculum as key to defeating youths’ unemployment and socio-political instability.
AbdulRazq, who is also the founder and executive director of Dudden Hill Foundation, said that the development would go a long way to maximise the nation’s human capital resources for its development.
He said over the weekend during the Kwara State University (KWASU), Malete, seminar on career development and mentorship that young people “must be well-equipped and positioned to enjoy the opportunities in the new economy.”
He said that “the root causes of unemployment and social instability is the lack of access to quality education and critical skills among students and young graduates,” urging them to take advantage of the internet to acquire knowledge.
He noted that “our vision is clear. Our strategy is even simpler. We have a platform to register and enjoy FREE access to basic learning on in-demand skills such as online business, investment banking, data science, CV Writing/Interview preparation, digital marketing among others.
“This is designed to bridge the gap between the school and the labour market. It is crucial to reversing youths’ unemployment and social unrest.
“These are things I experienced in the course of my career. So, I am taking it upon myself to mobilise the young people to benefit from my wealth of experience and exposure in education, investment and banking to groom a new generation of quality leaders.”
AbdulRazaq stated further that “Dudden Hill Foundation is embarking on a nationwide campus tour to sensitise the students on career and grant them access to learning relevant skills on their website through its next program.
“The organisation inaugurated 10 outstanding students in KWASU as ambassadors, providing them with starter packs for the project.
“Today is important to all of us and our future. I congratulate all the ambassadors. Let me tell you that this position is that of responsibility.
“You will help carry the message of growth to the thousands of your friends in KWASU and Kwara State to lead the nation to development.
“You are joining a moving train of progress. KWASU is our first point of call in Kwara but it is not the last. The NeXt Project continues to other schools and states.
“We are on course to producing young people who are equipped with relevant skills, exposed and employable in the new market.”
The event was attended by top players in the public and private sectors including the General Manager, Kwara State Social Investment Programmes (KWASSIP), Mr. Mohammed Brimah; Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on NGO Affair, Mrs. Olohuntoyosi Thomas; Senior Vice President GE Healthcare Financial Services, Mr. Tunji AbdulSalam; Partner and Creative Director the Hook Creative Agency, Toheeb Balogun; members of the students’ union and other youths-led groups in the state.
During the panel session, General Manager KWASSIP, Mr. Muhammed Brimah, urged the students to cultivate good habits and friendships, noting that it is vital to success in career and leadership.
The Senior Special Assistant on NGO Affairs to the Kwara State Governor, Mrs. Olohuntoyosi Thomas, who commended the enthusiasm and massive turnout for the event, further provided a list of the 20 top skills for the future recommended by development bodies and market leaders, encouraging them to obtain most ahead of their graduation.
Tunji AbdulSalam and Toheeb Balogun, while sharing their personal stories, stated that personal investment is a continuous process respectively.
They corroborated that opportunities exist for the skilled in private sectors for the competent hands.
KWASU Students Union President, Mr. Yusuf Umar Danshitta, while delivering the vote of thanks, admonished the students to make the best of the opportunities provided by the Dudden Hill NeXt project, and ensure that they work for the growth of the university and the state.
He also tasked Dudden Hill Foundation to spread its Next Program to other universities to benefit many students across the nation.