The Akwa Ibom State Governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel has reiterated his commitment to creating an enabling environment for the development of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises in the State.
The Governor made the statement on Friday, 18th December 2020 at the certification dinner of batch 3 of the My Entrepreneurship Goals Programme (MEGP) a business and entrepreneurship training programme organized by the State Government for entrepreneurs in the state.
Represented by the permanent secretary, Ministry of labour and manpower development, Mrs Valerie Obot, Governor Emmanuel said his administration was committed to supporting start-ups and growing businesses. In his words, “I wish to reiterate my administration’s commitment to supporting start-ups and growing businesses as part of our efforts to ensure wealth and job creation for the youth to boost the industrial health of the State”
The State Governor listed the Ibom 3000, the MEGP, as well as other capacity-building efforts by his administration as a well-conceived and concerted effort to flood the economy with informed and well-educated entrepreneurs who he said would service the ever-increasing number of industries in the state.
Speaking further, the State’s helmsman congratulated the 200 graduating entrepreneurs for following through the rigours of training and coming out successful. He, however, advice them to place more premium on skills acquired rather than the certificates given; “I want to, however, advise the trainee-graduates that their winning edge in business is not the certificate acquired but their ability to solve problems” he said.
Earlier in his remarks, the SSA to Governor Udom Emmanuel on Marketing and Brand Management, Mr Ime Uwah said the MEGP had over the years provided a free platform for budding entrepreneurs in the state to acquire the needed business education and exposure to opportunities for business support, strategic partnership, mentoring and market linkages. Uwah said the programme was highly effective, judging from the positive feedbacks cascading through the subsistence of the programme.
Uwah thanked the state Governor for his interest in entrepreneurship and enterprise development as evident in the various human capacity development effort of the administration of which MEGP is a part. He said the seeds of entrepreneurship education sown today would germinate to become successful businesses tomorrow, which would see Akwa Ibom State becoming commercially active.
In her remarks the SA to Governor on Entrepreneurship, Mrs Meflyn Anwana appreciated the State management of Small and Medium Enterprise Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN), the Exco of the MEGP Alumni Network for collaborating with the Directorate of Marketing and Brand Management to ensure the success of the MEGP.
The My Entrepreneurship Goals Programme, a nine-week intensive business training programme targeted at youths in Startup and Growing businesses in the State commenced on the 27th October 2020 and rounded up on the 18th December 2020.
The high point of the event was the presentation of certificates to participants and induction of participants into the MEGP Alumni Network.
The event also featured the presentation of cash prizes to winners of the MEGP MSME Pitch Deck 2020. The winners, Mr Church Mfon and Mrs Utibe Akwa took home five hundred thousand Naira (N500 000) and two hundred and fifty thousand naira (N250 000) respectively, for emerging tops in the Existing Business and Early startup categories. The first runners up in the Existing Business Category and the early start-up category went home with two hundred and fifty thousand naira (N250 000) and one hundred and fifty thousand naira (N150 000) respectively, while the third-place contestants took home consolation prizes of fifty thousand naira each.
In an interaction with newsmen, some of the participants expressed their gratitude and appreciation to the Governor and management of the Directorate of Marketing & Brand Management for the education, exposure and the opportunities that come with it.
Other dignitaries that attended the MEGP certification dinner were the SSA Youth Matters, Comrade Ani Iwa Udofia, Director of manpower planning in the Ministry of Labour, Productivity and Man Power Planning; and Mr Akin Oyediran, MD Jubilee Syringe Manufacturing (JSM), SMEDAN State Coordinator, Lucy Ekpenyong, among others.