UIMGA tasks Muslims on entrepreneurial skill
University of Ibadan Muslim Graduate Association (UNIMGA), Lagos State Chapter has enjoined Muslims to develop eagle eyes towards discovering opportunities that can pilot them to becoming employers of labour and not job seekers.
During a seminar organized by the group to proffer solution to unemployment in the country, the Chairman UNIMGA, Lagos State Chapter, Dr. Moruf Adebakin said the workshop is borne out of the desire to impact on the society.
Noting that the growing rate of poverty arising from youth and graduate unemployment in Nigeria has always caught the attention of group.“Let me whet your appetite with the following questions. Do you know that the current population of Nigeria is 201,915,717 as of 7th September 2019, based on the latest United Nations estimates? Which is equivalent to about 2.6 percent of the total world population (7,713,468,100). Do you know that nearly 70 per cent of Nigerian Population is youths below age 35yrs with a median age of 17.9years?. Do you know that Nigeria is now perceived as a centre of poverty among nations of the world with about 46 percent of our population (i.e 87 million people) living below poverty line of 1.90 dollars per day? Do you know that the 170 universities in Nigeria (Fed, 43; State, 48; Private, 79) as at today graduates an average of 1.9 million people annually? This does not include graduates from Polytechnics and Monotechnics whose number almost equal those of the universities.
Do you know that a greater percentage of these graduates belong to the 70 percent youth bracket earlier identified. Do you know that one of the indices of poverty apart from insecurity is unemployment? Do you know that as of January 2019, 55.4 percent of our youth population (15-35 years) was either underemployed or unemployed? If all these questions are germane, it stands to reasoning that any attempt by any group to proffer solution to this unemployment question cannot be undermined.
“This is what UIMGA is out to achieve with this workshop. It represents our contribution towards the campaign against poverty eradication via entrepreneurship education. As a support for the Federal Government desire to reduce poverty through serial job creation efforts, in line with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We identified Entrepreneurship as the way to go, hence, our choice of Entrepreneurship and Business skills as the theme of this workshop.”
He urged government to provide a conducive environment for business to flourish. “The moment you have that eagle eye to spot opportunities even where you think there are problems you will spot that opportunity and explore it.”He urged faith-based organizations to emphasise more on entrepreneurship skill in their congregation and interaction with their followers. “It is not all about spirituality, let people be empowered by identifying their skill and push it out to reality with the use of technology.”
One of the guest speakers, who is also CEO of B.K.O Citadel Ltd, Alhaji Lukman Obileye asked participants to be broad minded in the conception of their businesses. He spoke on Setting up a successful business venture. “When venturing into business, you must identify your target audience, don’t target only Muslims. If you don’t know your target market or audience, you can’t realistically expect your business venture to survive.”
He urged Muslims to tap opportunities in financial management, tourism, health, education, waste management and ICT and other areas. “Those that started Ansarudeen society didn’t have money, but they identified the challenge the Muslim ummah was facing in terms of education and they proffered solution to it by building Muslim schools.”He noted that Islam always encourages Muslims to be innovative and active entrepreneurs.
“Conducting business ethically is important and that should be practiced. Muslimpreneurs should have the following qualities in order to thrive. Taqwa as a framework, Tawaqul, take halal and haram as a top priority and be transparent in business dealings.”He warned that starting a new business with loan wasn’t a good option.
The Managing Director, Dharmattan Nig. Ltd, Alhaji Bashir Koledowo in his paper titled making your business thrive said for a business to be successful an entrepreneur must have faith, be realistic, creative, persistent, honest, reliable and focus. “You must believe in what you are doing to be successful. When running a business, it is certain to encounter failure, but your faith in the business will keep you going. Don’t just focus on success because it takes time to achieve desired result in business.”
Those in paid employment among the audience derived great lessons in the presentation of Dr. Saka Matemilola who spoke on Making the best of paid employment.
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