By Gbenga Akanmu
Bayero University, Kano has emerged winner of this year’s Students in Free Enterprise competition for tertiary institutions in the country that took place at the MUSON Centre Lagos.

Bayero University defeated five other schools and will  represent Nigeria in the SIFE world cup scheduled for October, this year in Germany. The Federal University of Technology Owerri came second while the University of Jos came third.

SIFE is a school based programme teaching students entrepreneurial and business skills to enable them solve real world problems for real people. The programme concentrates on seven areas like entrepreneurship, business sustainability, market economics, success skills, financial literacy, environmental sustainability and business skills.

Speaking at the event, Mr Alvin Rohrs, President/CEO SIFE said every country has a brand and the global brand of Nigeria is not as strong as the country of Nigeria. One way through which SIFE is enhancing the Nigerian brand is through the presentation of the SIFE team from Nigeria at the yearly SIFE world cup.

Another is the opportunity that SIFE presents for business leaders from Nigeria to meet their counterparts from across the world. A third way, he emphasized, was the SIFE structure that measures management quality and Nigeria scored 4.7 out of the scale of 5 and this is known by business leaders around the world.

Rhors urged the students to be patient, work hard and keep their eyes set on the goals they want to achieve. He continued that change can happen and asked that Nigeria should be seen in the light of what it can become.

His words “If you treat people as they are, they would remain so but if you treat them as who they can become, then they become so”.

In her speech Adesuwa Ifedi, Country Director, SIFE challenged the students to dare to be different, saying leaders are not born but born out of experience. She asked them to treasure this experience noting that great leaders are great thinkers.

Giving his address  Mr Roman Nico Marfels, delegate of German Industry & Commerce West Africa called on the students to invest in self development but urged them not to forget others.

Elijah Etoh, a member of the Bayero University winning team said the victory was a dream come true, that this year they had many great projects, great experiences and so many challenges but won through hardwork and prayers.

His words “We were not just working and carrying out projects but also praying for the people we impacted, at the same time we were expanding our horizons and touching lives. We are proud to represent Nigeria and we will ensure that we bring back the SIFE world cup and make Africa proud.”

The SIFE competition had members of the business community as judges like Mr Frank Aigbogun of Businessday, Olumide Olayinka Partner, KPMG Professional Services & Chairman SIFE Nigeria Board of Directors, Mr Tayo Aderinokun of GTB, Peter Ekunkoya, Coca Cola, Tara Feladurotoye, House of Tara Int., Mr Roman Nico Marfels, Delegate of German Industry & Commerce to West Africa etc.

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