Senator Tokunbo Abiru has explained that the Innovation Lab he launched is meant to help youths and entrepreneurs maximize technological opportunities.
He revealed this during the graduating ceremony and Demo Day of Business 101 for Creatives and Artisans (Cohort 001) participants of the Senator Abiru Innovation Lab (SAIL) where he supported business start-ups with grants.
Of 47 individuals that enrolled for the training, 41 aspiring entrepreneurs successfully completed the 3-months intensive business training overseen by the technical partner of SAIL, the Co-creation Hub (Cc-Hub).
In his speech, the Senator representing Lagos East Senatorial District, Abiru said that he set up the lab to address the increasing unemployment rate among youths in the country.
He stated that there are massive opportunities in the digital age and the nation cannot afford to miss out on them.
Abiru said, “We are all aware that in recent years, Nigeria has faced unprecedented economic challenges ostensibly caused by recession, shrinking revenues and the Coronavirus. The National Bureau of Statistics, NBS reported that the youth unemployment rate in Nigeria is at 42. 50 in the first quarter of 2022.
‘’Ladies and gentlemen, distinguished guests, having failed to maximize the opportunities of the agricultural and industrial ages. Now, we are in the digital revolution age, we therefore cannot as a nation afford to miss out on the enormous opportunities available in this innovation and digital age.”
He continued, ‘’This is the compelling rationale behind the establishment of The Senator Abiru Innovation Lab (SAIL). Look around you today, you will discover that the COVID-19 pandemic has made remote working fashionable. Also, the rise in the deployment of robotics and artificial intelligence all point to the fact that we either brace up for technology or we lose out again!
‘’So, I knew, when I became Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, that the most enduring empowerment I can give to young people and entrepreneurs, in my constituency is to leveraging my global exposure and experience to make them globally competitive by equipping them with premium digital, innovative and technological skills which are in high demands globally. This was in keeping with the social contract that I had with the people of the Lagos East Senatorial district when seeking their votes.”
Also speaking was the Managing Partner of the Creative Economy Practice at CcHUB, Ojoma Ochai who appreciated the senator for his investment in the creative sector.
She urged the graduating participants to maximize the trainings that have been giving to them and the opportunities in the creative sector.
The event saw 10 aspiring entrepreneurs in the pioneer graduating cohort pitch their business ideas to a panel of business professionals for seed funding and mentorship.
The overall winner, John Olisa received N1.5m, first runner-up Jessica Nwobodo got N1m and Ogundare Esther 500,000.
Leave a Reply