Creative sector, panacea for youth unemployment, says Minister
The Minister of State for Mines and Steel Development, Chief Uche Ogah, has urged Nigerian youths to leverage the ample opportunities in the creative industry to overcome unemployment. Ogah said this at the closing of a two-day photography empowerment/training workshop in Umuahia.
The event was facilitated by Mr Fawole Oluwadamilare, the Special Adviser on Documentation to the Minister for Mines and Steel, Mr Olamilekan Adegbite.
Ogah, represented by his Chief of Staff, Mr Kelechi Ekugo, said: “Youths should leverage the creative sector because youth unemployment has become a big challenge in our country.
“However, new avenues should be explored to solve the problem.” He commended Oluwadamilare and his team for the initiative and hoped that the training had helped to equip and strenghten the participants.
“It is my hope that you will apply what you have learnt to become entrepreneurs and professionals,” Ogah told the participants. Oluwadamilare in an interview with newsmen said that he was inspired by the growing rate of youth unemployment in the country and the difficulties youths go through to survive.
“Nigeria is experiencing rapid population growth, while its revenue profile is shrinking.
“We also have more youths than the aged. This has worsened the unemployment rate and life becomes the survival of the fittest.
“Photography is something that can transform one’s life. So I want to use it to empower the youths and curb the rate of unemployment in my own little way,” he said. Oluwadamilare, who is in his mid-30s, urged the youths not to despair but remain dogged, resilient and persevering.
“They should remain focused and vigorously pursue any profession they have chosen and the sky will be their limit,” he said.
He said that 60 persons, mainly self-employed photographers, participated in the Abia workshop. Oluwadamilara said that 40 were trained in Nasarawa, adding that Ogun State would be their next port of call to be followed by a state in the North-East.
“The target is to train at least 50 persons in each state of the federation and a minimum of 300 persons in each geo-political zone of the counry,” he said.
The Abia Chairman, Association of Professional Photograhers of Nigeria, Mr Dende Enyide, thanked the facilitator and his team for their interest in lifting Nigerian youths out of poverty through photography. Enyide said the workshop helped to widen their mental horizon on everything they knew about photography.
“In the next one year, the import of this training would manifest,” Deinde said. He appealed to the minister of state for mines and steel development, Ogah, who hails from Abia, to assist the group with accommodation, vehicle and sponsorship of its 2021 Photography Day Celebration.
Three participants, who distinguished themselves in the field competition organised at the end of the workshop, were rewarded with different items to aid them in their job.
The overall winner, Chubuike Onyediakor, got a camera, while the second and third runners-up, Okechukwu Maduka and Paul Ogar, got speed light and hard drive as well as hard drive and memory card, respectively.
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