Minister of Mines and Steel Development Olamilekan Adegbite has called on engineers in the country to explore opportunities in the mining sector to create jobs for youths.
He made the call at the inauguration of Mrs Halimat Adediran as first female chairman of the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE), Bwari chapter, on Saturday in Abuja.
“In this country, we need to create employment for our teeming youths; we need to create wealth for this country.
“The world is moving away from fossil fuel; gone are the days of crude oil, it is going and it is a certainty. It is no longer an issue of if, it is when.
“Some countries in Europe have already set dates, some call it 2025, some call it 2030 when they will not allow any fossil fuel cars on their roads again; it will all be electric cars.
“At that point, who are we going to sell our petrol and crude oil to? Everybody is changing due to climate change and everybody is looking for clean and renewable energy.
“Fortunately for us in Nigeria, we have a lot of minerals, we need to explore properly and exploit to give Nigeria that competitive edge in that post-crude oil petroleum era,” he said.
Besides. Adegbite said that the training of engineering students in tertiary institutions in the country should also transmute from theoretical training to more of practical training.
He stressed that skills acquisition should be made compulsory so as to drive the manufacturing industries in the country.
Adegbite said that the theme of the event — “Digital Economy in the Post-COVID-19 Era: Focus on Opportunities — was very apt.
He noted that it was important for the country to explore other means of revenue generation in the post-COVID-19 era.
Similarly, Mr Ahmed Amshi, Chairman, National Assembly Service Commission, noted that a lot of opportunities abounded for young engineers in the mining sector.
Amshi, who is the guest speaker at the occasion, said that all young engineers in the country must see themselves as problem solvers who were ready to solve every challenge that came their way.
“There are quite a number of start-ups that young engineers can venture into such as applying digital economy in the mining sector of Nigeria;
“Processing of solid minerals start-ups, using prescriptive modelling to optimise mineral processing;
“Preparing designs, plans and schedules for miners and mining operations as well as research and development of new mining methods and technologies;
“Developing software to support mining planning programmes and logistic modelling of pit operations, among others,” he said.
In her remark, Adediran, Chairman of NSE, Bwari chapter, promised that her tenure would take the advantage of digital economy to empower unemployed young engineers.
She added that the association, on its part, would make efforts at sinking two solar-powered boreholes for some communities in Bwari Area Council of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
According to her, the society is making efforts at impacting on communities, while mitigating the spread of COVID-19 and water borne diseases.
The highlights of the event included the inauguration of the 2020/2021 executive members of the society.