CEO Identifies How Nigerian Youths Can Become Employable

CEO Identifies How Nigerian Youths Can Become Employable

  • The CEO of Transblue, Akeem Ajisafe has stated that public and private sectors in Nigeria can close the employment gap among Nigeria youths
  • He stated that a university education is no longer sufficient for securing employment in today's job market
  • Ajisafe said the youths in Nigeria need to be equipped with soft skills that would enable them to survive in the ever-exploding population

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Partnerships between the private and public sectors have the potential to bridge the gap between the academic world and the existing work environment.

According to Akeem Ajisafe, CEO of Transblue, collaborative efforts will provide solutions that address the soft skills gap, which has rendered many youths ineffective in the job market.

Soft skills, employment
CEO explores employment opportunities for Nigerians Credit: Alistair Berg
Source: Getty Images

University degree not enough for jobs

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While commenting on the prevailing challenge in employment, Ajisafe told that despite graduates completing their studies with technical knowledge, they still miss job opportunities because they cannot demonstrate the required soft skills.

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Ajisafe said:

"Our education systems produce graduates with excellent grades, but a gap precludes them from career-defining jobs. Our graduates sometimes cannot demonstrate good communication, collaboration, problem-solving, and critical thinking skills, which are essential for employers."

A recent report published by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) noted that Nigeria's unemployment rate has risen from 27.1% in the second quarter of 2020 to 33%, making the country the second-highest rate on the Global List.

The report further highlights that over 60 per cent of Nigeria's working-age population is younger than 34 years, pointing toward a need to empower them for employment and proof against socio-economic challenges.

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By 2050, Nigeria will have a population of over 300 million people, making it the third-most populous nation on earth. It means that the number of individuals seeking employment will further increase.

Ajisafe stated that the youths are the driving force behind any society's economic growth and technological innovation.

Mismatch prevails in Nigerian job market

They also make up the critical masses, particularly in developing nations like Nigeria, who have the power to strengthen or weaken the fabric of society.

However, according to the Center for the study of the Economics of Africa CSEA, the Nigerian labour market is characterized by a significant mismatch between the skills required by companies and the ones available on the market, contributing to the high youth unemployment rate.

QNET, a leading direct-selling company, has leveraged such partnerships by collaborating with local experts and partners to address the challenges of financial knowledge faced by young people.

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In collaboration with Transblue, a logistics partner, QNET recently launched its financial literacy programme 'FinGreen,' which aims to develop healthy financial habits through education and training in the most vulnerable communities.

The project hopes to empower young people to take charge of their future and lead better lives, including improving their employability skills to pursue opportunities for employment and entrepreneurship.

The FinGreen program is implemented with a local not-for-profit organization, Financial Literacy For All (FLFA), in charge of developing training on entrepreneurship, financial literacy, and other critical soft skills.

Firm provides hope for employment

The project is part of QNET's overall corporate social responsibility initiative to Raise Yourself to Help Mankind (RYTHM). Hence empowering young people to be entrepreneurs will help create a better future for all. So far, over 500 young adults, through a peer-to-peer model in communities like Ikeja, Ikorodu, Ogun, and Oyo states, have received financial literacy training through the FinGreen project with an extensive module on employability skills.

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FinGreen adds to existing government and other stakeholder initiatives as a collective effort toward empowering the youth for the job market. Through activities like The Nigerian Youth Employment Action Plan (NIYEAP) launched in 2016, the government of Nigeria has shown clear prioritization of unemployment issues.

The NIYEAP serves as a multi-stakeholder partnership to advance the implementation of youth-employment-related targets of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, focusing on digital skills, quality apprenticeships, green jobs, and the rural economy.

AfDB opens Application for fashion entrepreneurs in Fashionomic Africa competition, with $20k for each winner

Meanwhile, reported that Fashion designers, entrepreneurs, and business owners are asked to apply for the Africa Development Bank (AfDB) Fashionomic Africa incubator and accelerator programme via the bank’s call for proposals.

The eight-week programme will involve training, a pitch event and cash prizes.

About 12 finalists would slug it out for the top four prizes of $20,000 (N8 million) each.


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