Virtual Remarks At The National Summit on Igbo Apprenticeship Scheme On 10/03/2022
VIRTUAL REMARKS BY HIS EXCELLENCY, PROF. YEMI OSINBAJO, SAN, GCON, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA AT THE NATIONAL SUMMIT ON IGBO APPRENTICESHIP SCHEME ON THE 10TH OF MARCH, 2022
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen and honoured guests, let me start by saying how delighted I am to be able to join you at this summit virtually. But for clashes in my schedule, I really would have preferred to be physically present.
For several generations, legions of businessmen, traders and entrepreneurs have emerged and come into their own through the conveyor belts of the Igbo Apprenticeship Scheme otherwise known as “Igba Boi”. It is perhaps the most popular, indigenous Nigerian economic institution and has been globally recognized as the world’s largest business incubator.
This clearly demonstrates that as a people, we possess social-cultural tools with which to forge a future of sustainable prosperity.
The theme, “Repositioning the Igbo Apprenticeship Scheme for Sustainable Economic Development” is apt and the summit itself is a timely one.
It provides an important opportunity for us to reflect on the scheme and more importantly, to fashion ways by which we can calibrate the scheme for national use and meet the realities of the 21st century.
We must ask ourselves for example, how do we scale up the scheme to maximize its potential as an engine of wealth creation and economic growth?
How do we bring the scheme into the formal economy? Are there aspects of the scheme that technology can enhance?
I believe that the Igba Boi scheme has the potential to do for our economy what similar apprenticeship schemes have done in other parts of the world. The notable ones are the ones in Germany and India.
We have something unique to teach the world and I think that this is a good start – to begin to teach the world something original that comes out of the Nigerian business environment.
I welcome this summit as an opportunity to imagine greater possibilities for the Igbo Apprenticeship Scheme. I am happy to note that this summit will be the first of many, and I commend the organisers for putting the event together and I look forward to formally receiving the outcome of your conversations and your proposals.
I wish you very fruitful deliberations.
God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.