Causes, Effects and Solutions to Youth Unemployment Problems in Nigeria

Article excerpt

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to look into the causes, effects and solutions to youth unemployment problems in Nigeria. The rate at which unemployed graduates roam the street after the National Youth Service constitutes social malice to the country as a whole. The data for this paper was collected from secondary sources using descriptive approach of previous researches and analysis of scholars to gather empirical data. The findings revealed that unemployment in Nigeria among youths are caused by six major problems and six major effects which has created tension and hatred between the haves and have not, leading to communal clashes and the rise of such groups such as Boko Haram, Niger Delta Militant, armed robbery, prostitution and child trafficking constituting hiccups to security of lives and properties. Also, the findings revealed that unemployment in Nigeria increased from 21.1% in 2010 to 23.9% in 2011 with youth unemployment at over 50%. From 2011 to 2013 there is an increase of 16% unemployment growth rate in Nigeria. Significantly, the impact of this paper is that government should create labour market that work better for the youths employment and recommends that the government should invest heavily on education to enable the youth become self reliance instead of job seekers through skills development and training.

Keywords: causes, effects, solutions, youth unemployment, Nigeria

INTRODUCTION

In Nigeria, it is expected that both individuals and government at all level should join hands to build a Nigeria where everyone is resourceful and useful. What is the guarantee that large army of unemployed youths will not engage in activities that would undermine the stability of democracy in Nigeria? The problem of chronic youth unemployment is very evident in Nigeria. Every year thousands of graduates are turn out for whom there are no jobs. Nigerian streets are littered with youth hawkers and bike riders who ordinarily would have found gained employment in some enterprises; or would have demonstrated their skills and resourcefulness if there are enabling environments and reliable management structures on ground. Instead, the youths have now shifted their attention to Cybercrime popularly known as '419'.

This is the wrong use of technological innovation, which ordinarily should have been channeled towards technological advancement as witnessed in U.S., Canada, United Kingdom and China- the emerging world's production and economic power. The large number of youths who are unemployment is capable of undermining democratic practice as they constitute a serious threat if engaged by the political class for clandestine activities (Adepegba, 20111; Ibrahim, 2011; Lartey, 2011; Olatunji & Abioye, 2011.)

Simply put, unemployment descries the condition of people who are without jobs. The International Labor Organization (ILO) defines the unemployed as numbers of the economically active population who are without work but available for and seeking work, including people who have lost their jobs and those who have voluntarily left work (World bank, 1998:63). Also, Adebayo (1999) stated that unemployment exists when members of the labor force wish to work but cannot get jobs. Governments at all level should strive to create viable structure which will encourage the youths to think rationally towards job creation rather than job pilferage and almost unending unemployment proliferation in vogue in Nigeria. Youth unemployment, therefore, could be described as the conglomerate of youths with diverse background, willing and able to work, but cannot find any; or cannot find the type of job that they are trained to do, and which they will be proud to do as their area of expertise. When the supply labor outstrips the demand for labour, it causes joblessness and unemployment. Given the lack of sufficient employment opportunities in the formal sector, young people may be forced to engage in casual work and other unorthodox livelihood sources, thus leading to underemployment (Echebiri, 2005; Gibb & George, 1990; Onah, 2011). …