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Nigerian Youths Must Be Encouraged To Embrace Technology For National Development -Minister of State For Science/Technology

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Nigerian youths have been urged to embrace science and technology so that they could contribute their quota to the development of the country.

According to the country’s Minister of State for Science and Technology, Hon. (Barr.) Mohammed Abdullahi, the Nigerian youths form the bulk of the nation’s population, adding that they should be encouraged to embrace technology for the benefit of the country.

Abdullahi stated these at the annual Youth Leaders Conference organized by the Superior Performance Global Network (SPGN), which held at the J.F Ade Ajayi Hall, Main Auditorium, University of Lagos on Saturday February 1, 2020 with the theme: “Elevate 2020.”

Speaking under the topic; “Youth As A Catalyst To Nation Building: The Role Of Technological Innovation,” Abdullahi told the youths that they would become what they wanted to become tomorrow depending on how they utilise their youthful age.

“The youths require an inner motivation, an inner peace. The youths form a large segment of the population. We should interact with them as they form the bedrock of what we want to do in the future.

“The Nigerian youth is typically energetic, boisterous, innovative, progressive and ambitious. They represent the future of Nigeria and represent everything we need to make Nigeria great.

“There are challenges for the youths such as lack of employment, low skill development, low and poor infrastructure that could motivate them to expand their ability. Youths should not allow themselves to be dragged backward,” he said.

On how technology could help develop the youths, the Minister said that technology is scientific innovations, and that it is about creativity, saying that the nation must allow the youths to have a reach out in terms of knowledge acquisition so that they could be innovative.

“Where youths are restricted and they could not go beyond their communities it could be difficult for them to get jobs.

“We must create digital entrepreneurship, multiple opportunities for wealth creation for youths to prosper. There must be multiple opportunities for wealth creation.
We must invest in digital infrastructure.

“Now, we have opportunity to create digital opportunities. There is an urgent need for our youths to look at sciences as courses to be taught in our schools for our country to be great.

“No nation can be great or move forward without science innovations. So, we must integrate technology into school curricular.

“We must engage the youths and ensure that they have a platform to express their innate creativity. Youths population in Nigeria would be close to 70% of the nation’s population in 2050,” he stated.
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He however added that there is National Science Technology and Innovation Roadmap 2030, and that the nation is looking at space technology to have Nigerian satellite built by Nigerians in orbit by 2030.

Also speaking at the event, the First Lady of Lagos State, Dr. (Mrs.) Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu, who was represented by
Mrs. Bolajoko Ajibade said in her welcome address that SPGN is a people-oriented organizations with passion for the youths.

Sanwo-Olu added that the theme “reminds us to do everything within our capacity, and to be focussed to achieve the best in life.”

The First Lady emphasised that any nation that denied the youths the necessary environment to participate in nation building process did so at its own risk, and that the youth were the foundation of the society.

“The youth represents the most vibrant and adventurous group on any society.

‘They constitute that largest chunk in any society, and 60% of Nigerians are said to be youths.

“The youths have always played prominent roles in the development of the country as the late Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Tafawa Balewa started off as youths. We should emphasize technical education and social entrepreneurship among youths,” she said.

Convener of the Conference, Mr. Olusegun Odufuwa said in his address that the Youth Leadership Conference Team had worked diligently to provide them with the leadership development opportunity.

“We are pleased that you have decided to join us for a day of education and shared experiences.

“The philosophy of Superior Performed Global Network-organisers of the Conference supports the belief that everyone has the ability to be a leader and succeed in life,” he said.

Odufuwa added that the speakers were carefully chosen to fit into the theme-“Elevate 2000 ” and that they were expected to share their stories, experiences and success tips that will ignite a new beginning in the youths.

“We also hope that you will utilize this opportunity to network with other young people as well as professionals during the conference and leave with a “winners” mentality filled with lots of desire to take charge, ” he said.

Speakers at the event included Head of Programmes, Lagos Traffic Radio, 96.1 F.M, Mr. Victor Oteri, Special Adviser to the Lagos State Governor on Education, Mr. Tokunbo Phillips Abdulwahab, Majority Leader of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Hon. Sanai Agunbiade, BB Naija Star, Miss Esther Agunbiade, Centre Co-Ordinator, Light House, Lagos, Mrs. B.K Gauthami Ben, and a leadership coach, Mr. Abayomi Ojekunle.

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