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Economy: FG urged to focus on SMEs, artisanship

By Prince Okafor

LAGOS— Experts at Graduate Internship Scheme (GIS), Federal Ministry of Finance, have called on the Federal Government to, as a matter of urgency, focus on elevating artisanship and Small-Medium Enterprises as a driving force for economy recovery

The GIS is a programme initiated by the Federal Ministry of Finance, in the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan, which has trained and empowered about 41,000 graduates, between 18 and 40 years, over the last four years.

Speaking at the just concluded GIS in Lagos, Managing Director, KURO Communication, and trainer in the programme, Mr. Michael Enahoro, praised the initiative while urging universities to include it in their curriculum.

He said: “We are beginning to see that the curriculum is misaligned with the realities of the economy. This one year training is helping graduates better prepare for life in the real economy.”

He further urged that the universities academic boards should inculcate GIS programme as part of their undergraduate activity for final year students, in a bid to mitigate the unemployment rate in the country.

He said that university education is not a must as the economy of Nigeria is basically entrepreneurial.

Mr. Enahoro advocated that more people should be admitted into Polytechnics and “School of Graphic, Fine arts etc”.

On his part, Head of Information and Communication Technology at the GIS, Mr. Lasa Samuela said the scheme would be an eye opener to its trainees on the various job opportunities in the country.

He stressed that the training was geared towards “empowering the graduates with necessary skills and opportunities that lie outside the work environment. This is so that the graduate will not only focus in one direction but will also look at other opportunities and create jobs themselves”.

One of the trainees, Mrs. Florence Ilechukwu, who came all the way from Awka, in Anambra State for the programme said that she had no regrets at all for being part of the scheme as she has acquired new knowledge and was going back to her workplace to “put in all the knowledge and be the best staff there”



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