Former President John Agyekum Kufuor has advised the youth to take advantage of the various initiatives by the government to create wealth for themselves through entrepreneurship.
He said the youth must believe in their ability to create a sustainable future for themselves, instead of always looking up to the government to solve their problems.
“It is not book knowledge that makes one an entrepreneur; it is smartness and the ability to provide solutions for problems,’’ he said.
The former President was speaking at his residence in Accra on Tuesday after he had been made the Patron of the Ghana Job Bank, an initiative meant to curb the high unemployment rate in the country.
The occasion attracted many dignitaries, such as the Minister of Education, Dr Matthew Opoku-Prempeh; a Deputy Minister of Communications, Mr George Andah; the Executive Director of the National Service Scheme, Mr Mustapha Ussif, and the Turkish Ambassador to Ghana, Ms Nesrin Bayazit.
Also in attendance were the Chairman of the Minerals Commission, Mr S.K. Boafo; a rapper, Michael Owusu Addo, known by the stage name Sarkodie; actress Joselyn Dumas, as well as other celebrities.
Ghana Job Bank
The Ghana Job Bank concept focuses on making the youth entrepreneurs by mentoring them and providing them with technological skills and capital to develop businesses on their own and provide employment opportunities for others.
It was developed by EON3, a social media and digital marketing company, in partnership with Vayuz Technologies, a leading Information and Communications Technology (ICT) firm in India, and the Dubai-based Africa Mentoring Consortium.
The government, President Kufuor said, was not supposed to engage in business but rather had the responsibility for creating an enabling environment for businesses to thrive.
“Our society must appreciate the fact that the public sector can only be the infrastructure for the private sector. It must prepare the grounds and set the framework, so that individuals will take up the challenge of doing things for themselves,’’ he said.
The former President underscored the importance of the private sector to development, adding: “It is the private sector that creates wealth.’’
In his remarks, Dr Opoku-Prempeh lauded the creators of the Ghana Job Bank and said the nurturing of talents was crucial to any development agenda.
He, however, urged them to implement policies that would sustain the initiative.
For his part, the Executive Director of EON3 thanked the former President for accepting to be the patron of the Ghana Job Bank.
He said the EON3 would collaborate with government agencies, such as the National Service Scheme, as well as private agencies, to ensure that the initiative stood the test of time.