Sen. Oluremi Tinubu, representing Lagos Central Senatorial District, has urged graduates to acquire entrepreneurial skills to be able to compete in the labour market, especially during the post COVID-19 period.
Tinubu gave the advice at the closing ceremony for the Work Experience Programme (WEP) organised for graduates in her constituency.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the programme started in November 2019 with no fewer than 260 graduates across the constituency who underwent the internship programme.
The exercise was conducted with the purpose of empowering youths with requisite work ethics, inculcating customary code of polite behaviour and promoting positive workplace culture.
They empower youths in the Lagos Central Senatorial District via ensuring employability and adequate preparation for the labour market.
Tinubu, represented by
Mr Wahab Alawiye-King, one of the facilitators at the programme, said apart from acquiring certain employability skills, graduates needed self-confidence to succeed in the job market.
The senator said that the programme was designed to make the participants ready for the labour market, which she said was highly competitive and hostile.
According to her, employers are looking beyond degree holders in today’s dynamic world, noting that most companies want graduates with skills that match available jobs.
She said that graduates need to acquire digital skills to be able to compete in the labour market.
“Post COVID-19 has opened our horizon and expanded our scope, and as a result, ability to adapt and adopt in the work environment is of essence.
“So far, 245 interns were involved in the exercise and 185 have been posted to different organisation, both the government and private establishments,” Tinubu said.
She said that conmmunication skills, leadership skills, interactive skills, analytical skills and IT proficiency were parts of the major requirements needed by today’s employers, urging graduates to improve themselves.
”We always say there is rise in the unemployment rate that graduates left schools for so long and they are still at home.
”But, the reality is that the jobs are not there; and many graduates do not have the skills and competencies to compete and pick up the few jobs.
”So, our young people must know that to get a job, they have to be ready. They need to acquire the right skills.
”We are in a digital economy; l urge them to engage other people and strive to acquire skills that could get them the better opportunities of being employed,” she said.
Tinubu said she conceived the idea of WEP to equip graduates with relevant skills to enhance their employability in the labour market and make them have practical work experience.
“They undergo training under the programme in government and private establishments.
According to her, the programme is committed to the wellbeing and welfare of the people of her constituency.
She, therefore, urged graduates to improve their confidence level for success.
In his remarks, Mr Omiyale Adejare, the Chairman Yaba LCDA, commended Tinubu for the kind gesture, saying it was a laudable programme.
Adejare said the programme would impact positively on the lives of the people.
He called on other politicians to emulate such in planning and developing youths in their district.
Adejare advised youths not to relent on their efforts, urging them to continue to search for knowledge in order to empower themselves.
A participant, Opeoluwa Akintola, a graduate of University of Lagos, also commended Tinubu for the programme, saying that it would go a long way to uplift graduates in the area.
Also, Miss Yetunde Shitta-Bay, a graduate of Public Administration, also expressed her appreciation for the N40,000 given to each participant.
Shitta-Bay advised youths not to depend solely on white collar jobs, urging them to have other means of livelihood to eradicate unemployment in the society.
Edited By: Olagoke Olatoye (NAN)