By Ugo Aliogo
First Bank of Nigeria Limited has reiterated its committed to economic development through youth empowerment programmes aimed at deepening the knowledge of the next generation of Nigerians on financial independence and wealth creation.
Speaking at the bank’s Youth Empowerment Series 3.0 programme held in Lagos with the theme: ‘Let’s Talk,’ the Chairman, First Bank Limited, Mrs. Ibukun Awosika, said the youth empowerment series was designed to sensitise the youth on the importance of financial discipline, savings and investment.
“First Bank is committed to nation building and any institution that is committed to nation building cannot avoid investing in building and enlightening the next generation of Nigerians.”
Awosika explained that what the bank was doing is to equip the next generation of youths as a seed of nation building, adding that the bank did the initiative not because it wanted to spend money, “but because it believes in the next generation that would change the country with financial knowledge.”
The First Bank Chairman added noted that the country needed to build a generation of entrepreneurs that would address unemployment.
According to her, “We need to create jobs and we need to create an entrepreneurial mindset so they can be solution providers and business builders. It’s when you build businesses that you can create jobs.
“Government cannot create jobs, it can employ some people into the civil service but the bulk of the population will still remain in the private sector and you can only do that by creating enterprises. The most successful way to do it is to educate, empower and to reset the mind of the youth.
“The youth need to take charge of their lives by making the right decision at any given time and avoid being vulnerable. Early enough you must have a sense of ownership of your life, when you fail it’s not your parents that failed. Everything you do is essentially for you and the sense of ownership is very important, you must fight and protect it. If you don’t do well your parents will be sad, but it’s your future. Youths should pay attention to the decisions they make for a better future.”
Earlier in his remarks, the Managing Director, First Bank Limited, Dr. Adesola Adeduntan, said the youth empowerment summit was intended to grow the future of teenagers and youths on the path of financial freedom.
He remarked that the bank was passionate about the youth, noting that it recognised that the future of the country is dependent on the youths.
He espoused that the bank was promoting the advancement of the country by taking conscious steps to prepare the future generation for meaningful growth and development.
Adeduntan represented at the event by the First Deputy Managing Director, Mr. Gbenga Shobo, said the bank would remain committed to national and global long-term economic development.
In his words: “The youth empowerment summit is one of the remarkable investments we have made at First Bank to prepare the Nigerian youths and to enable you become enterprise minded. About 35 per cent of our customer base is actually youth. People don’t think so because they say FirstBank, they think it’s an old people’s bank but the biggest segment we have is the youth.
“We decided that especially in a country where blue collar jobs, white collar jobs, are getting scarce; that it’s important to prepare the youth in entrepreneurship in Nigeria. The programme, which commenced in 2017 was aimed at sensitising the youth on the importance of financial discipline, savings and investment. This year’s summit focuses on entrepreneurship in areas of music, fashion, media and photography. We urge you to begin today by making a conscious effort to imbibe the savings culture, this is a habit you find useful in developing financial and planning habit at this early age.”