Causes Of Unemployment In Nigeria

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In as much as it has been widely opined that rising unemployment rate is a global problem currently plaguing both developed and developing countries16, recent studies have shown that, it is a lot more severe in developing countries with characteristically rapidly growing labour force. it has been reported that number of the unemployed in sub Sahara Africa rose from about 28 in 2016 to 29 million in 201717. Nigeria for example is one of such countries with characteristically such mind boggling high unemployment rate, which is currently reported to be over 18%.
The surge of unemployment in Nigeria is a key problem facing both the government and the private sector of the economy. It is a scary phenomenon which is widespread,in that it cuts across
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Bairoch (1976) hinged its argument on the cause of unemployment to the intrinsic relationship between excessive supply of labour and the rate of growth of the population30 .it argues that the size and growth rate of the labour force is ultimately dependent on the size and growth rate of the population. He opined that both the population grew too rapidly in developing countries, and consequently the size of the labour force, to the extent that employment growth could not keep pace, thus resulting in growing unemployment.
This theory rings true to some extent as the cause of unemployment in the country,where studies have shown that the economy grew too slow to cope with its ever increasing labour force. It has the higest population in Africa and is among the countries in the world with the highest population growth rate.its population grew from about 70 million in the 1980s to over 185 million today31. This is however in stark contrast to its economic growth as shown in figure
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It blamed it on repeated attempt to remedy the situation with policy instruments that are irrelevant, ill advised and not suited for an economy like Nigeria’s. Often times, these policy instruments are recommendation from international organizations without proper knowledge of the modus operandi of the Nigerian economy.SAP, structurally adjustment program, implemented in the late 80’s comes to mind. This was a policy seen by many as been imposed on the country to curb its unemployment situation and help kick start its economy. A key feature of this handed down policy was regulation of employment in the public service (i.e. a massive limit on staff strength)38.This was done without taking cognizance of the fact that the public service was a key employment sector for the country and without first providing alternative job possibilities. .This result was that the economy slided into recession and unprecedented unemployment levels
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