From Mohammed Ibrahim Kaduna
Sixteen young Nigerians have emerged as the first set of Kashim Ibrahim Fellows in Kaduna State.
The successful candidates were announced yesterday at the Government House, Kaduna, which is named after Sir Kashim Ibrahim, who was Governor of the Northern Region.
Seven of the 16 fellows are female, and Kaduna State residents constitute half of the fellows, while the others are from other parts of Nigeria.
The fellows emerged from the over 1300 applications that were submitted online to the Kashim Ibrahim Fellows Programme portal by the deadline of 20th March 2018.
Speaking at the event, Governor Nasir El-Rufai said he was impressed by the quality of many of the candidates that forwarded their applications for the fellowship.
“Their submissions reinforced our conviction that youthful talent abounds, and that we can productively engage these smart young people for the benefit of our country. Each of the 31 persons that made the last stage of the selection process was superbly qualified,” he said.
El-Rufai confirmed that the Kashim Ibrahim Fellows Programme is an initiative of the Kaduna State Government to help develop and nurture leadership ability across Nigeria, with a specific focus on the promising leaders of the future.
The one-year programme aims to create a network of high potential young Nigerians who are expected to rise to top leadership positions in the public sector and other spheres of activity over the next decade.
The governor affirmed that the leaders of the country owe the youths platforms for leadership capacity development.
“There is no doubt in my mind that leaders in Nigeria must device and sustain deliberate pathways to build youth capacity for leadership in the public service.
“Most Nigerians are younger than 35, and we owe them a duty to make the necessary investments to enable them to acquire the skills, the steel and the exposure for effective public service.
“The world of today is changing fast, with new challenges and opportunities arising. It is time that we become quite deliberate in building leadership capacity, recruiting the most talented and promoting a meritocratic culture.
The Governor further explained that the Governing Board has designed a commendable leadership development programme aimed at producing the next generation of inclusive, patriotic and results-oriented managers of human and material resources in the public sector.