LANRE RASAK AND ADENIYI ADAMS CHARGED YOUTHS TO TAKE OPPORTUNITIES IN ENTREPRENEURSHIP
by Obasa Adedeji
The third edition of the Trek Africa Entrepreneurship Conference that held on Wednesday 7th of March at the LCCI center in Alausa, Lagos state, proved to be both a delight to the crowd in attendance and a much needed eye opener to the Nigerian public.
The highly publicized event which featured prominent bigwigs and industrialists across all spheres of life went through without hitch and was as entertaining as it was informing. Beginning towards midday with an opening speech from astute businessman and traditionalist, Chief Lanre Rasak, who is also the Balogun of Epe Land, the event moved on to the interesting agendas of the day with the Special Guest Speaker and MD/CEO, Knightsone Properties Ltd, Mr. Adeniyi Adams.
Delivering a paper, “Unlocking the Economic Potential in Real Estate for Youth Development”, at the Trek Africa Entrepreneurship Conference (TAEC), 2018 in Lagos Adams stated that, “If we go through what our population is and the percentage of the unemployed, we need to rejig our education curriculum to encourage entrepreneurship.
“In the last quarter of 2017, unemployment rate has risen to about 16.12 per cent, that is quite an alarming figure.
“There is a need for us to change our educational system. We need to start producing graduates that will shift attention from white collar jobs,” he said.
According to him, there is a major problem with the education curriculum, as it is not guiding towards entrepreneurial skill.
“If we keep doing same things same way, the result will be the same.
“We definitely need to rejig our education curriculum in terms of taking entrepreneurial studies from secondary schools.
“We need to train and reshape minds of students to ensure that after schools they don’t start thinking of paid employment which is not there again,” he said.
Adams, the Managing Director, Knightstone Property Limited, said the economic situation in the last one decade had not favored entrepreneurship because of concentration on monolithic economy.
According to him, the development made several companies to fold up, leading to mass sack of many workers.
The entrepreneur, who added that some graduates are also not employable, said there are lots of opportunities in the real estate sector.
“Aside ICT, the real estate also has high employment opportunities and profitability.
“The value chain in the real estate is very large that the youths can actually take advantage of it,” he said.
He urged the youth to look at the value chain in real estate and make the best out of the many opportunities.
Mr. Victor Ikem represented the MD/CEO, Ceecon energy gas and oil ltd, Dr. Chima Anyaso who delivered his Speech tittled; “The Spirit of Enterprise”.
The CEO of Cellulant Nigeria Limited was Represented by Miss Chioma Melone who made a brief paper presentation on the innovative Products of the company that the youths and entrepreneurs can take opportunity and embrace for businesses.
Other part of the event which included a panelist session, seminar/ awards session, idea parade and cake cutting session with Nollywood diva, Grace Ama.
Shortly after the opening speech, the Balogun of Epe Kingdom, Chief Lanre Rasak, who is also the chairman of KLM group of companies availed himself to the pack of journalists for questioning outside, while the program continued inside the main hall. During the course of questioning, the Balogun emphasized on the importance of skills acquisition and vocational education. “I recommend Government finds a way to include skills acquisition into the educational curriculum, it will go a long way in tackling unemployment and improving the labor market and I also recommend people should pursue something they like or feel comfortable doing, only then can there be productivity and satisfaction” he added
The panelist session was another major highlight as ideas; information, recommendations and possible outcome were debated and exchanged by experts in their fields. The panelists included CEO Image Booster, Debbie Larry-Izamoje, Founder/CEO KFAO Corporate, Finnih Ayodeji, Special Adviser on Education to Ecowas Youth Council President, Amb. Tosin Sanusi, CEO Sterling Reach Ltd, Mr. Alaba Ayanuola, American University Enterprise, Michelle Ifunanya, Chairman of the Occasion, Chief Lanre Rasak and Anchored by Chichi of Entrepreneur Media.
The seminar/awards session although brief proved to be as equally interesting as the panelists’ session as several individuals and companies were recognized for performing excellently in their fields. Highlight of the awards session was when Knightstone Properties emerged as the Property Company of the year. The chairman of the company. Mr. Adeniyi Adams, who was a guest speaker, expressed his profound delight while appreciating the gesture of the Trek Africa Team for recognizing the activities of his company in the Real Estate industry.
Then came the idea parade, where several enterprising minds shared their innovative ideas, from the scholar with the revolutionary educational app to the agro entrepreneur, missiles of innovative ideas were exchanged and celebrated on this platform.
The much anticipated cake cutting session with Grace Ama happened towards the end of the conference. The nollywood diva who became a year older recently, was celebrated with a special customized birthday cake presented by the Trek Africa team for her contribution to the Nigerian entertainment industry. The light skinned beauty was full of appreciation for the thoughtful gesture on the part of the Trek Africa team before proceeding to cut her cake, flanked by friends and fans.
Although this edition of the Trek African Entrepreneurship Conference is gone but there remains the lessons to be learnt. Skills acquisition and vocational trainings would be an immediately effective panacea to the problem of unemployment and vices on the rise, as suggested by the experts who talked on the issue.