Over 2,500 people gathered to witness Africa’s biggest skills competition hosting over 80 skilled persons emerged from three (3) regions in Nigeria; South-West, North, and South-east to compete at the National finals in Lagos showcasing skills excellence.
The iCreate Skills competition is an innovative strategy designed to promote skills trades professions amongst youth as a means to bridge the skill gap, curb unemployment and boost the economy. iCreate Skills Fest is a platform that promotes skills excellence, showcases skills standards and careers, demonstrates benchmarks of excellence in teaching and learning and creates interest in public sector agencies and private organizations to invest in skills development.
In partnership with GIZ SKYE, Robert Bosch Nigeria Limited, Sterling Bank Plc, AGR Ltd, Siemens Nigeria Ltd., The Fashion Academy Abuja, Trace, House of Tara, Industrial Training Fund (ITF), Society of Nigerian Artists, Soundcity, ULDA, Pedini, amongst many others, iCreate Africa hosted Africa’s biggest Skill Trades Job fair and Skills Competition on the 4th – 5th December 2019 at Landmark Center Oniru, Lagos.
The two- day event featured 14 skilled trades in (Construction, Creative Art & fashion, Technology, Transportation), Technical Vocational and Educational Training Conference, industrial exhibition, the iCreate Skills Awards, entertainment, and lots more.
Emerging top in their category are the iCreate Skills Fest 2019 champions: Ibraheem Ridwan (Carpentry), Christopher Olaniyi (Tiling), Miracle Olasoyin (robotics), Mojisola Akin-Ademola (Fashion), Ifedayo Emmanuel Bello (cooking), Emmanuel Abanobi (make-up), Kelvin Hassan (Barbing), Oluwaseun Akanbi (Electrical installations), Chima Solomon (plumbing), Leonard Manzo (automobile technology), Toheeb Ogunbiyi (Website development), Precious Audu (graphic design), Lot Madaki (leatherworks), and Oluwaseun Akinlo (Art).
CEO iCreate Africa, Bright Jaja aims to rebrand the general perception of skilled workers and place more importance on technical and vocational skills through the skills fest. As such, winners of the iCreate Skills Fest 2019 receive technical training from various partners such as Bosch, The Fashion Academy Abuja, House of Tara, o2 Academy Lagos, SB Exclusive Shoes, whereas the winner in Art will exhibit at Omenka Gallery, and entrepreneurship development training will be provided by SMEDAN.
The Founder/CEO iCreate Africa Bright Jaja aims that iCreate Africa creates five million jobs in five years by empowering about one million people who would, in turn, employ at least five people in their businesses.
Following the success and impact of the iCreate Skills Fest, Bright Jaja reveals that iCreate Africa seeks to expand its horizons to rebranding skills and changing lives in more regions in Nigeria. Consequently birthing the iCreate Skills League described as the ‘sports league of skills’, where young skilled persons will compete in teams based on their region, as such producing 6 regions and 36 skilled leagues representing the 36 states of Nigeria.
All 14 categories including barbing, cooking, robotics, plumbing and more shall be represented in each league state where the winners from each of the six (6) zones would compete in the final at the national level come 2020.
Further, iCreate Africa unveiled its next project which is the iCreate Skills Park; a safe haven for young skilled persons where they can express themselves creatively with the tools and infrastructure required to do so.
Speaking at the first technical vocational and educational training (TVET) conference were members of the government as well as of the private sector in a bid to encourage both parties to synchronize their efforts into promoting skills, and developing the sector in the Nigerian economy by embracing platforms such as iCreate Africa has created.
Speaking at the TVET conference was Honorable Minister Of State For Education Hon. Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, who highlighted the importance for technical and vocational education in the mainstream as well as the challenges of youth unemployment could best be addressed through quality education that guarantees self-reliance.
Key government stakeholders in education graced the event including Hon commissioner Lagos State ministry of wealth creation and employment, ably represented by director employment Iyabo Motilayo Seriki-Bello, DG SMEDAN ably represented by director partnerships Dr. Friday Okpara, hon commissioner of education Lagos State ably represented by director of educational and special programs Mrs Aganga Williams, Permanent secretary Kaduna State ministry of business innovation and technology ably represented by SA to the hon commissioner Mr Uche Enyioha, Mr Sunday Afolami, Lagos regional manager bank of industry, DG ITF ably represented by Mr. Zachariah Piwuma director research and curriculum development.
Presence from the private sector in supporting this project to rebrand skills was greatly felt as top stakeholders gathered to discuss the role of the private sector in promoting skills as well as their testaments to the great influence efforts placed on skills promotion yields. Present at the TVET conference and event were; Senior technical advisor GIZ SKYE Mr Stephen Agwu, Mr Abubakar Suleiman MD Sterling Bank plc. , Mr Boris Dolkhani Vice President Brand Management and Marketing Communication, Robert Bosch Ltd, Mrs Alero Ayida-Otobo, founder Incubation Africa, Mr Andy Nweke MD AGR limited, Mrs Abisola Longe, Mr Ulf Brackmann MD Ueberfrei, MD TRACE anglophone West Africa Mr Sam Onyemelukwe.
Skills are the future of Nigeria and so iCreate Africa urges the public to invest in skills and target the next generation of Nigerian youth who will power the economy not only of Nigeria, but Africa and the world.
Skills change lives.
We inspire young people to develop a passion for skills and pursue excellence, through competition and promotions.
We develop Skills through global training standards, benchmarking systems, and enhancing industry engagement.
We influence industry, government, and educators through cooperation and research, building a public-private partnership network of skills for all.
To address the challenge of youth unemployment and poverty in Africa through skills development.
To build an Africa that has the skilled workforce to utilize its natural resources and take the lead in global discourse.
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