Information Is Key To Reducing Unemployment In Nigeria – Daudu | Independent Newspapers Limited
Newsletter subscribe


Information Is Key To Reducing Unemployment In Nigeria – Daudu

Posted: Jul 1, 2015 at 12:41 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Tunde Daudu is in charge of marketing at Cogency Nigeria Limited. In this interview with Ikechi Nzeako, he speaks on how his company has been training young Nigerians to become entrepreneurs. He argues that unemployment will be drastically reduced if Nigerians are aware of the resources and opportunities around them and take advantage of them. He asks the youth not to roam the streets in search of jobs but should seize the opportunities around them.Excerpt:

What does Cogency Nigeria Limited do?

We started as a real estate company and later started some empowerment programmes to train people to be self-reliant and become entrepreneurs and also employ other persons. Our aim is to empower the human resources in Nigeria so that they can develop the natural resources in the country and create wealth and reduce poverty.


Why we offer training

Nigeria is a vast country with vast human and material resources. Every country in the world has its own share of human and natural resources and the natural resources are meant to be developed by the human resources. Nigeria is regarded as a Third World country because there is a disconnect between the natural resources and the human resources; the human resources have not developed the natural resources to the optimal level where the people can make use of them and that is why there is wide spread of poverty in the country.


How do we bridge the gap?

Nigeria has not been able to develop its human resource because most Nigerians are not aware of the resources and opportunity available in the country; two, if they are aware, how do you develop human resources so that they can be in a position to develop the natural resources for the benefit of the people. We believe that Nigerians have talents that can be developed and enabled to develop the human resources that abound in the country and we are bridging that gap by training Nigerians to be entrepreneurs so that they can be on their own and also employ others. The government cannot do everything for the people but it can create the enabling environment for entrepreneurs to thrive in the country. The initiative for the training of Nigerians has to come from private organisations like ours. It is the responsibility of the government to provide basic and primary education for the people. After leaving secondary, it is not everybody that winds up in the university; even those that have tertiary education may not have the requisite skills that the job market requires. Most Nigerian graduates still need to be trained in skills that the employers demand. The government does not have the facility to train Nigerians, that is why we are doing the training here. We want to bridge that knowledge gap.


How far has the organisation gone in its quest to train budding entrepreneurs?

We have gone far with our training programmes and we have made a lot of impact. We have adopted a three-pronged approach. One, we have set up a cooperative society, which have been running for some time and the impact has been huge. We organise people. We train them in vocational fields; we also train them in how to raise funds to manage the business that they have set up. We also train them in management principles so that the business we have helped them to set up does not die. We discovered that some people have the money and some take loans to start up a business and in many instances the business do not do well because the operators did not have the management skills to manage the business. That is the reason behind the idea to teach business principles to those we have trained in one vocational field or the other. This has helped to reduce the default ratio among the people that have taken loans to start up their own businesses.


How have the people that you have trained fared in market place? I mean in running their own businesses?

Most of them have been making use of the training we gave them in the running of their business and they are doing well and they have, in large part, been able to pay back their loans. The rate of default has been very low. We give them enough time and they have been well trained in the art and science of management.


How do you get the resources to train the people you have trained, given that you also offer free training?

In-house, we have people who have a rich background in management. For instance, I am a SMEDAN-trained business educator and I was trained in management in the United Kingdom and I worked in the industry for 30 years. So we are well equipped to do the job we have assigned to ourselves. For now, we originate our training programmes in-house and invite facilitators from outside.


Where is the motivation coming from?

We are doing what the government should do but if the government did not do what it should do and many youth are roaming the streets, then it is not too much for an organisation like ours to stand in the gap and do the needful. We believe that we can impact our society, not for profit any way. Money will come but we want to be seen as responsible corporate citizens. That is the motivation, which is to develop human resources of the country.