…States across the country committed to human capital development…Sule
…Human capital development evidence in trading, educational sector… Finance Minister
By Ademola Adeleye, Abuja
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, on Thursday gave reasons why investments in growing youthful population in Nigeria is of great essence during the launch of a landmark document on Human Capital Development Campaign in Nigeria: The Strategy Document on Human Capital Development.
This is as Osinbajo laments that by 2050, the youthful population in the world will amount to 400million out of 650million competing for scare resources leading to increase risk of social instability, hence the need for investments in human capital development, healthcare, nutrition, quality education, skills, and jobs.
Osinbajo who spoke at the launch of the strategy documents of the Human Capital Development, HCD Programmes for Nigeria said the investments will yield opportunities of being the most profitable investment frontier in the world and becoming the global food basket.
The VP added that the investments will become the greatest source of highly trained human resources in technology, engineering, sciences and in the creative sector among others.
He said: “Our continent, which is the youngest and growing at double the rate of the rest of the world, the youngest country, Niger is in our sub region with an average age of 15 years. By 2050, West Africa will have 650 million people. Almost 400m will be young people. And we must provide quality basic education and healthcare for them, nutrition.
“This is because inadequate nourishment results in suboptimal learning outcomes and a life time of disadvantage especially in what is becoming a fiercely competitive Knowledge economy. Also because idle youthful populations portend an increased risk of social instability, we must invest in relevant skills as we provide good paying jobs and opportunities. All these mean that Governments face huge public expenditures, growing as population increases daily.”
He added: “But in these massive challenges lie the incredible opportunities of being the most profitable investment frontier in the world, of becoming the global food basket and of becoming the greatest source of highly trained human resources in technology, engineering, sciences and in the creative sector among others.”
Osinbajo however called on subnational leaders and stakeholders to partner with Governments at all levels in making the investments gather momentum and become a reality at the long run.
He charged: “But all these great hopes and aspirations stand or fall around governments and governance. It is the commitment of national and subnational leaders that will determine whether these strategy documents will gather dust or gather momentum. Political will and action is what stand between rising poverty and misery of our people, on the one hand, and good governance and judicious. The effective use of scarce resources is the thin line between demographic dividend and a demographic disaster.”
Speaking at the event, Governor Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa State who spoke on behalf of all governor’s present said “States across the country are indeed committed to human capital development and will continue to show great commitment.
“We actually started when we came in with a series of capacity building; a restructuring of the civil service for urban productivity. Because without that, we are there is no meaningful development. And for a state like ours, we are spending a lot of time looking for industrialization.”
Also present was Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed who spoke on behalf of the Ministers present said: “We’ll continue to be committed to contribute our own quota, as has been evidenced in how we have been increasingly funding the trade and education sectors.
“Excellencies ladies and gentlemen, I want to congratulate the youths that we have seen here today, especially the young ones that have demonstrated that creative arts is also an industry that can help us to grow.”