Ever so often, we talk about the different sectors of the Nigerian economy. But seldom do we talk about one important sector- the unemployment industry! That’s right, there is a sector of our economy known as the unemployment sector. It is a vibrant sector, absorbing most of the able-bodied men and women in the country. But something about this sector is very unique, and that’s the fact that it does not contribute wealth to the economy or ensure the livelihood of those absorbed by it!
Jokes asides, the unemployment crisis in Nigeria has become so serious to the extent that it deserves a ministry of its own. In an era when our dear governor Rochas thinks it wise to establish a ministry of Hapiness and Purpose [Couples’] fulfilment, it still beats me as to why establishing a “ministry for unemployment” has yet to become a priority. But that’s an aside which however does not detract from the seriousness of the unemployment menace. If anything, it points to the lackadaisical attitude with which our government treat the important issues that affect its citizens.
Every average Nigerian family has at least one graduate that is unemployed. Now this may not be a fact, especially seeing as there is no statistical data at my disposal to support the claim. Yet it is the perfect assertion, deduced from available evidence in the country. According to the recent information made available by the National Bureau of Statistics, nearly twenty million Nigerians lost their jobs last year, making the unemployment rate to stand at a staggering 18.8%. It is one of the highest in the world, which in saner climes should be a cause for serious concern. Unfortunately in a true Nigerian manner, the government has shoved the report asides and behaved as though it was never compiled. Even the affected citizens (whose job it should have been to demand that the government do something about the situation) have remained mostly unbothered. In the light of all these, the unemployment industry keeps thriving, with its negative effects felt by all.
Truth be told, we do not need the unemployment industry in Nigeria. If anything, it’s high time all concerned stakeholders come together to proffer a lasting solution to Nigeria’s unemployment crisis. We cannot afford to keep up this way.