The Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr Tunde Lemo, has called on the Federal Government to pay compensation to unemployed graduates as part of its strategy to reduce poverty, crime and social vices.
Lemo made this statement while speaking at the fourth convocation ceremony of Crawford University, Igbesa, Ogun State on the topic “National Development: Youths and the Entrepreneurial Challenge”, lamented that the high rate of unemployment was killing the self-worth of graduates and leading to the high crime rate.
He then asked that the Federal Government adopt the unemployment compensation policy started by the United States and adopted by other countries to support the unemployed graduates through the period of being jobless. He also called for the reintroduction of the Higher School Certificate programme and an increase in the fight against corruption in the nation’s university system.
He laid out facts to support his suggestion of an unemployment compensation policy, saying that the USA created the policy as part of its Social Security Act in 1935, and in 2010 alone, 10 million Americans were lifted out of poverty by virtue of this policy.
He also advocated that the exposure of young people to entrepreneurship and provision of incentives to young farmers would go a long way in bringing down the unemployment rate.
In his own remarks, the Pro-Chancellor of the university, Prof Peter Okebukola, said that corruption would have to be eliminated from the university system if better quality graduates were to produced.
He also supported the call for the reintroduction of the Higher School Certificate program, and added that religious and moral instruction should be taught in schools to stem the rising tide of social vices such as lesbianism, homosexuality and exam malpractices.
He added that teachers at all levels should be trained on the use of ICT and technology to improve their education delivery. He also took a differing view from most school administrators who call that students should be discouraged from spending too much time on social media. Rather, he said social media can be turned into a classroom for the teaching of tough subjects.
He said rather than clamour for the ban of social media, universities in Nigeria should take advantage of it to aid their delivery, such as in the Western world where lecture notes can be delivered even on Facebook.
Okebukola had earlier said that since the inception of the university seven years ago, 557 graduates had passed through its gates and urged the 253 graduating students to go into the world and become positive transformers and an army for Jesus Christ.
The Vice-Chancellor, Prof Samson Ayanlaja, had earlier said that of the 253 graduating students, 14 had obtained a first class degree while 18 had second class upper degrees. 114 had second class lower degrees, 45 made third class and two had ordinary pass, from Microbiology and Business Administration respectively.
He also said that the university had scored 100% in the accreditation exercise of the institution’s programmes in 2012 by the National Universities Commission, adding that the institution’s Accountancy programme at the undergraduate level had been given professional approval by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria, ICAN. This then makes it easier for their students to be ICAN-certified as they would need to take only a few courses of the institute.
He also announced other achievements of the university in the past year as including the establishment of a postgraduate school, provision of physical laboratory and some national awards won by the students.
Some of the personalities who graced the occasion included the Chairman, Board of Trustees of the university, Dr Gabriel Ajayi; the District Superintendent of West and Central Africa of the Apostolic Faith Mission and Visitor of the university, Rev Emmanuel Adeniran and the representative of the Ogun State Governor and the Commissioner of Education, Mr Olusegun Odubela.
Prizes were given to students who had excelled in both character and learning, which was the highlight of the ceremony.