Stakeholders at this year's Time Attendance Management System (TAMS) summit with the theme 'Making Nigeria Work' have called on the government to urgently restructure the country's education system to ensure a brighter future for the country.
Nigerians youths that attended the event in Lagos recently were also charged to go beyond sentiments, imbibe the culture and value of productivity so as to be good managers.
In her keynote address, the founder of LEAP Africa, Mrs. Ndidi Nwuneli said Nigeria can only be restructured to compete with other developed economies when the youths that make over 50 per cent of the population are given opportunities to show their creativity.
"Young people in Nigeria have what it takes to lead as they are not only the leaders of tomorrow but today. And for them to take the centre space, they need right education as currently, our education system needs to revamp as it pushes out creativity."
According to her, for the new generation to fit into the corporate world, Nigeria must have respect for human dignity; policymakers should set platforms for youth engagement; and there should be widespread educational reforms.
She added that the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) should be made voluntary and there is need for paradigm shift on the part of the millennia and corporate leaders to be flexible to accommodate the youths exposed to the dynamics of technology and innovation.
The convener of the TAMS summit, Mr. Afolabi Abiodun said the summit was organised to better engage the youths positively to bring about the desired change in the country.
"Nigeria belongs to the youths and the young ones have to be better equipped, set values and aspirations through global communication and interconnection."
He stressed that it is not best for youths to merely demand the mantle of leadership, as that it is not a gift that can just be given to them. "It is not about saying, it is time for youths to lead, we have to earn it. I am a Nigerian youth and you can see the steps I am taking, it doesn't come as a gift. Those we refer to today as 'old' earned it and the best way we can make Nigeria work again is to also follow that path."
The event, which was chaired by Mrs. Yetunde Ogbomienor, featured the conferment of TAMS Ambassadors award on over 50 youths that are making waves in the public and private sectors. Other dignitaries included the Chairman, Lagos State Local Government Service Commission (LGSECOM), Mr. Babatunde Rotinwa; the chief host Mr. Ibilowo Afolayan, among others.
The panellists, who discussed 'How to Build a New Generation of Corporate Leaders' comprised the Pro-Chancellor, Lagos State University (LASU), Prof. Adebayo Ninalowo; Managing Director, MRS Oil Nigeria PLC, Mr. Andrew Gbodume; Director, TVC, Mr. Ronan Redmond; and Business Coach, Stanford Seed, Mrs. Emily Liggett. They agreed that for the youths to take active positions in the private and public sectors there have to be policies, platforms and reform in the education sector that will improve them knowledge, skills and technology wise.
On his part, the Special Adviser to the Lagos State Governor on Education, Mr. Obafela Bank-Olemoh said the state government is committed to engaging the youths through various programmes among which is the Ready Set Work, an employability and entrepreneurship programme aimed at preparing final year students across eight tertiary institutions in the state for immediate entry into the workforce as employees and employers of labour.