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By David Mzer

The first Ever Benue Youth Entrepreneurship Summit, organized by the Eunice spring of Life Foundation, ESLF kicked off in Makurdi yesterday 14th of June 2017, at the Entrepreneurship Development Centre Makurdi.

The summit which is been put together by the Dr. Mrs Eunice Ortom through Her pet project, the Eunice spring of Life Foundation has 600 participants, drawn from the 276 council wards of the state.

In his keynote address, Governor Samuel Ortom charged Benue youths to develop creative ideas that will be translated into  wealth.
He reminded the participants that investment in women and youths remains one of the objectives of his administration.
He expressed optimism that a year from now, the youths will meet to discuss the success story of the Summit.
He disclosed that his administration will continue to support the summit, as it aims at receiving and supporting Bankable proposals from the participants. He supported the summit with the sum of N100 million, which is an interest free loan, and pledged to do more in the future.

Speaking earlier, the wife of the Governor and Founder of the ESLF, Dr. Mrs Eunice Ortom disclosed that the foundation has achieved a lot in the area of Agriculture, health, and other sectors of the economy, and the foundation was set to embark on the construction of a female hostel at the Benue State University to ease the problem of accommodation.

 She listed the  absence of recreational facilities, lack of jobs and others as  factors affecting the youths.

She expressed optimism that the Benue Youths have all it takes to make the theme of the Summit possible. The theme of the Summit is “Made in Benue is possible.”

Speaking on the topic” Youth invent your future “, the minster for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Chief Audu Ogbeh  charged the youths to embrace Agriculture, as they were many areas of the sector that were yet to explored.
He reminded the youths that poverty is  not an asset, but a terrible disease, and the older generation cannot fail to empower the youth, as failure to do so there will be no peace, and the nation will perish.
In his Goodwill Message, The Benue State Commissioner for Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr Tersoo Kpelai disclosed that the Ortom administration will continue to support youth empowerment programmes, as it is convinced that when you empower women and youths, to be self-reliant, you have succeeded in fighting in fighting insecurity, corruption, adultery, arm robbery and other social vices in the society.

Also speaking, The Commissioner for Education, science and technology, Prof. Dennis Ityavyar called on the Benue Youths to grab the opportunity presented to them by the Dr Mrs Eunice Ortom, and reciprocate the gesture by putting to use all that they will learn at the summit.

The aim and objectives of the Summit is to re-engineer the mind set of the Benue us youth towards productivity and enterprise,inculcate and promote values of patriotism and Nation Building among Benue Youth, expose Benue Youth to culturally relevant and global entrepreneurship knowledge and practices towards self-reliance and create a network of systems and institutions that will benefit the dreams and skills of the Benue Youth.
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