#MBE: Dealing with High Rate of Unemployment in Nigeria
By Esther David & Hope Samson
The rate of unemployment/ poverty in the country is worrisome. There are still employers in Nigeria and so are people who need to be employed. How can we possibly maximize the efficiency of the current situation to create more jobs and look for the employed/unemployed numbers?
This is the major topic discussed on Money, Business and Economy show with Tunji Andrews.
In over nine months, the National Bureau of Statistics, NBS has not released unemployment numbers because there is no money to carry out the survey, Tunji begins.
He says, “We have people on the streets who ask you for money. I don’t know if it’s just me but I’ve noticed that they’ve become bolder and aggressive. This comes with survival really because in times of scarcity, the tendencies are to press more to get what you want. And I’m thinking to myself, how did we get here?”
Osarete Guobadia responds, “It is a very painful subject. A number of issues we have in the country led us here and I do feel the same pressure you experience on the streets.
Tunji poses another question at Ibrahim, CEO of Muster saying, as an employer of labour, what are those restrictions or resources that prevent you from employing more people than you are currently?
Most companies and lots of startups try to do more with less, said Ibrahim.
Clemens Weits, CEO Roam who oversees Jobberman commented that there are lots of moving parts to the issue. There’s the part of Micro-economical environment which means there are not enough jobs and the part of dilapidating institutions resulting to unemployable graduates. So many graduates are aspiration driven. You have someone who reads engineering, wants to be a banker but not a teacher.
“It really starts with every single Nigerian. It is all about productivity. The solution is to educate every employer to figure out the best person for the job. But as an employer, it is not easy to find the best match for a job.”
One of the possible ways of fixing unemployment is to look at walking away from trying to send everyone into formal education/degree and train people with skills.
Clemens suggests that one of the areas Nigerians need to explore more and more is manufacturing. “What the economy needs is more hard jobs and with that comes a lot of vocational training but a lot of people abscond. Yes there’s unemployment but I can tell you that a lot of employers are looking for the right people for employment.”
My conclusion from experience is, “it’s a perfect mismatch.” There’s supply and demand but no workforce.
Ibrahim added that in 2019, the nation had 0% default in monthly payments. But I think this unemployment problem goes beyond finding appropriate talents or talents looking for an appropriate job. The major problem is people are unemployable. People are finishing Universities but without the right skills, he said.
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