Job Creation: Okowa Says Non-Oil Sector Is the Solution
Governor Okowa made the call Monday in Asaba, when he received staff and students of Senior Staff Course 38, Command and Staff College, Jaji, who were on a training tour of Delta State.
According to Governor Okowa, despite the huge revenue derivable from the oil sector which is unpredictable due to vagaries in the price of oil in the international market, the oil sector employs few persons compared to the non-oil sector.
“Oil is obviously a wasting resource, no doubt about that; we have lived with it as a country; we have generated a lot of money from it but unfortunately it appears that over the years we have not tried to diversify our economy and now that it has very poor prices in the international market, it is my belief that God has allowed it to happen so that as a nation we can look inwards and begin to think outside the box,” he said, adding, “beyond being a major source of revenue, we are also aware that the non-oil sector will help to generate employment for our people, because, the oil sector is so technical and while a lot of money can be made from it especially, when the prices were reasonably high you find that the oil sector rarely employs a large number of people but the non-oil sector has the capacity to employ and engage a lot of Nigerians.”
“To take our young ones off the streets we must pay emphasis on the non-oil sector as it has a lot of implications both in terms of economic growth of the families, of the nation and the state,” Governor Okowa said, reiterating, “it ensures that when these youths are taken off the streets and you get them engaged and they have a means of livelihood and with such, the security challenges that we face today will either be minimized or become a thing of the past; that is why I believe that the non-oil sector should get the desired attention to fully help our country.”
He stated, “here in Delta State, we have what we call the SMART agenda designed to strategically create wealth and job opportunities for our people through the non-oil sector; we have passed out the first set of trainees; we want our youths to become job creators themselves because when they own their businesses we believe that with time, they will become employers of labor and that is the direction we are really going.”
Earlier, the team leader of Course 38, Rear Admiral Sylvanus Abbah had told the Governor and members of the state executive council that they were in the state on a study tour which had as its theme, ‘Repositioning Nigerian Non-Oil Sector As A Major Source Of Revenue,” which he said was very critical based on the current drop in the price of crude oil in the international market.