President of the Senate, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, on Sunday called on the nation’s youths to venture into entrepreneurship through their cell-phones as a way of self-employment and creating job opportunities for others.
Saraki, according to a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Sanni Onogu, in Abuja, gave the charge while delivering the Fourth Convocation Lecture of the Adeleke University, Ede in the State of Osun, on Sunday.
In his paper with the title, “National Economic Development Through Entrepreneurship: The Role of Private Universities in Nigeria,” Saraki said it has become imperative for youths not to see their phones as fashion accessories alone, but potent platforms to launch themselves into entrepreneurship and gainful self-employment.
Saraki said: “To the graduating students, I will say that it is perhaps true that Nigerian youths are not currently maximising the potential that social media has for stimulating entrepreneurship in many areas, including those that were unheard of just a few years ago.
“I would like to see more young Nigerians put what they learned in the university to impactful use by leveraging on the social media’s abundant opportunity for business ventures.
“There is no reason why any of today’s graduating students cannot become a Jack Dorsey, the co-founder of Twitter, net worth $5 billion – or Brian Chesky, a co-founder of Air BnB. Michelle Phan of the cosmetic business Ipsy is now worth $300 million – not bad for someone who first started by uploading her videos on YouTube,” he declared.He stated that due to its belief that entrepreneurship is crucial to the success of the economy, the National Assembly has since prioritized the passage of landmark economic laws to enable Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) to grow.
He urged private universities to rise to the challenge of promoting private enterprises by ensuring that entrepreneurial skills are taught across various disciplines.
He said: “The education ethos ought to move away from the over-emphasis on theory-based approach and paper certification towards inculcating practical skills that support apprenticeship and boost innovation and industry.
“This is the place of vocational and technical education which provides that the youth imbibe practical skills that will not only make them employable but will also help the country to build an army of job providers,” he said.