Former Lagos State Governor who is now the Minister of Works, Power and Housing, Mr Babatunde Raji Fashola, said he was unemployed for several months after completing the compulsory one-year national service (NYSC) because he was waiting for his dream job.
Speaking to young entrepreneurs at a group mentoring programme for enterpreneurs organised by Young Business Leaders of Nigeria (YBLN) in Lagos, Fashola said after he graduated from University of Benin (UNIBEN) and he was unemployed, his father presented him with the opportunity to work with the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) but he declined despite the perks of being a post master at the time.
“I had a different passion and that was being in the courtroom; I therefore had to go for my dream to find a job that would help my career. It took me a while before I could get a job and that meant I was jobless for several months after NYSC,” Fashola said.
The immediate past Governor of Lagos State encouraged the young entrepreneurs to pursue their careers with a view to realising their potentials. “I am happy to see young people doing great things in their various areas of business. The better Nigeria, we hoped for begins with us,” he said.
He also encouraged the youths to develop a sense of identity, to mark themselves out from previous rigorous thinking, distinctive engagement and insist on doing the right thing always.
However, he noted the failing education system in country and thus lauded the YBLN’s initiative in training young entrepreneurs for positive change in the country.
The excited participants said they were inspired by the minister’s words. One of the entrepreneurs, Amina Abdulazeez, said: “I am happy to see his Excellency. I found him awe-inspiring and I have been motivated by his words.”
The 20 budding entrepreneurs were selected from over 3,000 applications that came from across the country to the YBLN and have been engaged in business and entrepreneurship coursework, complemented by an integrated programme of leadership training, peer collaboration, experiential learning opportunities and community activities. At the end of the program, each participant would have access to special credit facilities at low interest rates and, in return, are expected to employ a minimum of five persons before December 2016.