By Palma Ileye
Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Olamilekan Adegbite has commended the 21 graduands of the Gemstones and Jewelry Training School of the Abuja Chambers of Commerce and Industry for their resilience, dedication, enthusiasm and perseverance throughout the duration of the training.
Adegbite gave this commendation on Friday, during the graduation ceremony of the first batch of the gemstone and jewelry making trainees of the Abuja Chambers of Commerce and Industry.
He said that the seven months training was part of the Federal Government’s efforts at discouraging exportation of raw ore and ensuring that whatever was produced in the country was also processed in Nigeria.
This, according to him, would create jobs and wealth for the youth.
On the essence of the programme, he said; “this programme was designed to impart knowledge on you, so that we can make jewelries in Nigeria, we are going to retain our gold and gemstones in Nigeria, add value to it, sell to our people and export to other countries.”
He noted that Nigeria would soon become a gemstone and jewelry destination for other countries adding that in no distant time, “we will export finished jewelries which would increase the sector’s contribution to the GDP.”
The Minister said that the Gemstones and Jewelry trainees would feed into the gold souk and the gemstone market being constructed in Kano and Ibadan respectively.
While addressing the graduands, the minister charged them to impart the knowledge they have acquired to others in their communities.
Adegbite further assured them as he disclosed that the second phase of the training was in progress.
In his opening remarks, the Project Coordinator, Mineral Sector Support for Economic Diversification (MinDiver) Project, Engr. Sallim Salaam, appreciated the commitment and support of the leadership of the Ministry led by the Hon. Minister which he believed culminated into the success of the project.
He commended the doggedness of the 21 participants of the first batch of the training for staying through to the end.
The Project Coordinator disclosed that there are plans for advanced training for the 21 successful master training graduands, this, he said would be communicated to them in due course.