Kwara State Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq on Wednesday reaffirmed his administration’s commitment to continue to build the capacity of youth and give them the necessary support to flourish in life.
He pledged to continue to invest in youth development, and create for them different platforms and opportunities to showcase their gifted talents.
The Governor spoke in Ilorin, the state capital, at an event to commemorate the National Youth Day.
AbdulRazaq, who was represented at the event by the Speaker Kwara State House of Assembly Rt. Hon. Yakubu Salihu Danladi, said the youth inclusion policy of his administration serves as a good testimony that he prioritizes their interests, promising to continue to engage them meaningfully.
“We thank God Almighty for giving us the 1st of November to celebrate the youth. As against the past when the Youth Day used to be organized for youths, today, it is being organized by youth ourselves,” he said.
“In Kwara, we the youths are changing the narratives with the support of the Governor. I am sure, with what is happening now, by next year this time around again lots of youths will come and tell us their journey so far. And it is going to be in a positive way.
“And those of us at the helm of affairs we will continue to do our best in contributing our quotas for the development of youth. I am sure more youth will be engaged as far as this government is concerned”.
The colourful event featured panel discussion and testimonies by some youths who have triumphed in their businesses like technological space and entertainment industry;.
In attendance were some cabinet members and other government officials; state parliamentarians; and academics, including House of Assembly member representing Owode/Onire Constituency Hon. Rukayat shittu; Hon. Abdulganiyu Salaudeen; Hon. Salihu Baba Muhammed; Commissioner for Youth Development Hon. Usman Yunusa Lade; Commissioner for Business Innovation Technology, Hon. Damilola Yusuf Adelodun; Commissioner for Communication Bola Olukoju; Commissioner for Finance Hauwa Nuru; Special Adviser to the Governor on Youth Engagement Attahiru Umar Mohammed; Senior Special Assistant on New Media, Olayinka Fafoluyi Solace; Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Youth Development Alhaji Alabere Razaq Babatunde; Chief Press Secretary to the Governor Rafiu Ajakaye; Managing Director, Innovation Hub Center, Temi Kolawole; dozens of young entrepreneurs and students.
Hon. Rukayat, for her part, appreciated Governor AbdulRazaq for assisting the youth to realize their potentials, an attitude she noted is evident in how she emerged as the youngest legislator in Nigeria.
Lade, in his welcome address, said the government is committed to “creating a space where creativity not only flourishes, but directly influences policies where governance is not just a system, but a reflection of the aspirations and innovations of our youth”.
He encouraged youths to be creative, while learning from the experiences of already established youths that are well in the creative industry.
Olukoju, who spoke on various youth-friendly programmes and the investments by the administration like Innovation Hub, Garment Factory and Sugar Film Factory Studio, said Governor AbdulRazaq is doing a lot to empower the youths and make Kwara a business hub.
Temi, in his submission, said the digital world offers a lot of opportunities for people especially the youth to tap, and urged them to shine their eyes and show more commitment to grow their businesses through tech space.
One of the resource persons, the CEO of Hajjewels Creations, Hajarah Jibril, encouraged youths to be resilient, and make good use of the internet and social media to positively enhance their brands.
Another resource person, Haneefah Adam, advised youths to make use of resources available to them to portray and pursue their dreams, adding “my growth as an artist has always been me using the resources I have to develop myself”.
Sola Rahman, the CEO for Sola Rahman Brand, who shared his experience, said he decided to relocate his business to Kwara state because of the enabling environment the administration has created for the business community particularly the creative industry.