Article excerpt


This article has highlighted the causes of youth unemployment in Nigeria. It has observed that many young people in Nigeria are redefining themselves by creating their own social worlds such as youth streetism and gangsterism because of unemployment occasioned by deepening socio-economic crises. The study has identified increasing population growth, high degree of geographical mobility, lack of employable skills, non involvement of youth in decision making processes and the perception of policy makers and the youth themselves about employment as the major causes of youth unemployment in Nigeria. It has thus recommended that young Nigerians should be trained to possess skills that are congruent with the real labour market demands. The youth should be involved in all the decision-making processes so as to minimize the costs of their exclusion and to ensure the successful implementation of youth policies and programmes. Credit and loan schemes should be put in place to enable young Nigerians secure loans to set up their small enterprises. Sincere policies should be formulated to enable youth pursue sustainable livelihoods.

Keywords: Youth; Unemployment; Nigeria

Résumé: Cet article a mis en lumière les causes du chômage des jeunes au Nigeria. Il a observé que de nombreux jeunes au Nigeria se redéfinissent en créant leurs propres mondes sociaux tels que le streetisms et le gangstérisme à cause du chômage occasionné par l'approfondissement des crises socio-économiques. L'étude a identifié la croissance démographique, le degré élevé de mobilité géographique, le manque de qualification professionnelle, la non participation des jeunes dans les processus de décision, ainsi que la perception des décideurs politiques et les jeunes eux-mêmes sur l'emploi comme les causes principales du chômage des jeunes au Nigeria. Il a donc recommandé que les jeunes Nigériens devraient être formés à avoir des compétences professionnelles qui sont compatibles avec les exigences réelles du marché du travail. Les jeunes devraient être impliqués dans tous les processus de prise de décision de manière à minimiser les coûts de leur exclusion et de veiller à la mise en oeuvre réussie des politiques et des programmes de jeunesse. Des programmes de crédit et de prêt devraient être mis en place afin de permettre aux jeunes Nigériens d'obtenir des prêts à créer leur petite entreprise. Des politiques sincères devraient être formulées afin de donner aux jeunes des moyens d'existence durable.

Mots-clés: jeunes; chômage; Nigeria


Youth unemployment in Nigeria has become one of the most serious socio-economic problems confronting the country. The magnitude of this problem can be appreciated if accurate data on the number of jobless young people roaming the streets of Nigerian cities, towns and villages is available. Unfortunately, accurate statistics on youth unemployment are lacking. Nevertheless, estimates by the International Labour Organization (ILO, 1999) in Sub-Saharan Africa show that unemployment affects between 15-20 percent of the work force; and out of these estimates, young people comprises 40 to 75 percent of the total number of the unemployed.

Unemployment has affected youth in Nigeria from a broad spectrum of socio-economic groups. Both the well and less well educated are affected but more especially those from low-income backgrounds and limited education. Given the lack of employment opportunities and consequently the uncertain future, young Nigerians are forced to engage in unorthodox livelihoods sources while others engage in casual work which is highly irregular. This paper therefore, attempts to highlight the causes of youth unemployment in Nigeria, government's response to the unemployment problem and the effectiveness of the response. It also surveys the future of the Nigerian youth.


Youth unemployment in Nigeria is a consequence of several factors. …


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