Monday, 27 February 2017

Human empowerment as the best economic development

Human empowerment as the best economic development

Finding opportunities for the young and women is a critical challenge for Akwa Ibom State, where 60 % of the population, which is more than two million, are youths and women. With no signs that population growth will slow in the decades to come, it is imperative that Akwa Ibom State Government leverage on the talent and energy of its youth and women to create dramatically higher levels of prosperity and equality and avoid the latent risks of unemployment and social instability.

Today, Nigeria as a Nation finds herself in a precarious position on this most important issue. Youth and women unemployment is three times the Nation’s overall average. The World Bank found that, women represent three-fifths of sub-Saharan Africa’s unemployed population, and 72 percent of their population lives on less than $2 a day. To help their families, 30 % of children between the ages of 5 and 14 are forced to work, which robs them of the educational opportunities that could break their families’ cycles of generational poverty.

So what does the average unemployed youth look like in Nigeria ? She is an 18-25year-old girl, living in a rural area, literate but not attending school. Building her skills, reaping her energy, and realizing her aspirations would help every country improve its living standards and ignite economic growth. Empowering her with opportunities to reach and apply her full potential is both our most important challenge and our most vital opportunity.

I often put myself in the shoes of that 18-year-old girl, full of promise but with few opportunities to apply it. She is part of a generation of young Africans who are the most globally connected people ever to have lived on the continent. Although they can see the social and economic progress occurring elsewhere in the world, she and her fellow young Nigerian are largely isolated from that progress.

Offering the youths a quality education is critical for their success. However, only two-thirds of youth who start elementary school in Nigeria graduate, and only one in ten Nigeria students continues on to tertiary education. Even when she obtains her university degree, she will most likely have trouble finding a skilled job in the Country —which is why the country loses an estimated 20,000 skilled workers each year to more developed economies.

Simply put, Nigeria is sitting on a time bomb unless it creates its own jobs through the ingenuity, ability, and skill of its own people. It is the job of leaders to ensure that the millions of young people and women who are willing to put in the work to improve their future have every opportunity to experiment, learn, funds ,adapt—and eventually succeed.

Governor Udom Emmanuel’s education initiative for our youths in Akwa Ibom State will make all the difference. Entrepreneurship must be an integral part of every young person’s education. We need to impart not only the technical skills of entrepreneurship, but also the mindset of the entrepreneur, through our formal and informal education systems. That is why the AKYEES entrepreneurship for the Youth is key in the development of the State’s future generation and economic strength. If the future must have better economy than today, Akwa Ibom youth must be empower today to build tomorrow better economy . 

Women bear almost all responsibility for meeting basic needs of the family, yet they are systematically denied the resources, information and freedom of action they need to fulfill this responsibility. This is why Governor Udom Emmanuel is empowering over five thousand women to SMES loan, to ensure, women continue to build stronger families for the State and also be inspired to become great entrepreneurs. 

The vast majority of the world’s poor are women. Two-thirds of the world’s illiterates are female. Of the millions of school age children not in school, the majority are girls.

The current world food price crisis is having a severe impact on women. Around the world, millions of people eat two or three times a day, but a significant percentage of women eat only once. And, now, many women are denying themselves even that one meal to ensure that their children are fed. These women are already suffering the effects of even more severe malnutrition, which inevitably will be their children’s fate as well. The impact of this crisis will be with us for many years.

When women are supported and empowered, all of society benefits. Their families are healthier, more children go to school, agricultural productivity improves and incomes increase. In short, communities become more resilient.
Governor Udom Emmanuel’s commitment to serving our youth is necessitated by belief that, if we can facilitate the empowerment of youths, we can make an exponential impact on social justice and environmental issues. Our young people are our future leaders, one of the best places to invest our time and resources.

Young people who do not have adequate support around them are often considered “at risk.” They are at risk of engaging in criminal activity, drugs, joining gangs, violent behavior, or being the victims of violence. Psychologically they are more likely to suffer from anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, and mental illness.

So what is wrong in engaging the youths gainfully through the DAKKADA Ambassador’s initiative ? This is the programme that employs the youths to help in taking down to the grassroot the policies and programmes of Government, sensitize the people and in turn earn twenty five thousand .

If developed economies like United kingdom still pays income benefits to the employed youths and women , and operates free restaurants across the country for the helpless jobless people ,what is wrong for the people oriented Governor of Akwa Ibom State giving succour to the jobless? 

Today Akwa Ibom record 0.5 % of crimes across the State , this is because the Government of the day is the one with human face , who don’t operates governance of lies and deceits but a total believable system which ensures ,the agendas he professed to people during campaigns ,were not empty treacherous mendacities to get votes from the voters and later abandon them like what the APC Government is known for .

The harsh economic situation is making Nigerian youths to return back to criminalities. In the last one month there are rise in cases of arm robbery, theft and break and entry. In an extreme case, when one sees a child of seven years stealing garri and in the process, he gets caught and was heartlessly and gruesomely murdered in Lagos.

This is an extreme case of hunger and starvation that is raging the country . The Federal Government led by President Buhari had promised to pay five thousand naira to the unemployed Youths during campaigns but upon assuming office turned deaf ears and became insensitive to the well-being of the downtrodden people of Federal Republic of Nigeria . 

A prudent leader doesn’t dwell in frivolities but with great vision that will turn around the living standard of his people. He won’t stand to see his people languish in poverty , but he will move with compassion and prodigious passion to save his race from dying in penury. This is what Governor Udom Emmanuel Stands for.

His passion is to see an average Akwa Ibom person being able to graduate from tertiary institution, gainfully employed, afford three square meals a day, have a means of transportation ,being able to educate his children and feed them , own where to relax after work with his family, drive on comfortable terrain and have a house to call his or her own , in a compound language being able to be self-sufficient and self-independent.

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