The Effect Of Unemployment On Youths In Nigeria Society

Project and Seminar Material for Economics

The Effect Of Unemployment On Youths In Nigeria Society


The objective of this study was to assess the effect of unemployment on youth in Nigeria using Odeda community as a case study. The study addressed four specific objectives, to explore youths’ views on what they identify as necessary for them to be employed, to examine employer’s perception about what they consider to be the root cause for youth unemployment, to determine the extent to which education in Nigeria prepares youth for self-employment and to propose the ways for solving youth unemployment problem in Nigeria. Questionnaire and interview were used to solicit information from 100 respondents. SPSS (Statistical Product and Service Solution) was employed to analyze quantitative data, while qualitative data were subjected to thematic analysis. Study findings reveal that although job opportunities are few, youths blame the current education curriculum, saying it is too theoretical and do not expose students to necessary practical, skills to employ themselves. They also point to corruption and nepotism practiced by employers which they believe hinders competent youths from accessing employment. Employers on their side believe that youths, unlike adults have no necessary experience and competence needed in the world of work. – The study recommends, among the following to emphasize more on practical training in each stage of learning should be insisted, to improve quality of education, to introduce entrepreneurship training in each school and college is important to develop creativity and innovativeness in students. Government should fight against corruption, – to allow fair play in the access to employment.

Chapter One


1.1 Background of the Study

The issue of unemployment on youths can not be overemphasized like (2009), posited that ‘Nigeria as a country is often described as a rich country majority of poor citizen where 50% of the citizen live below poverty level. Unemployment has been a problem in Nigeria especially since 1980’s when the nation economy took a turn for the worse as a world petroleum price tumbled the Nigeria currency became devalued corruption became rampant and the population of Nigeria ballooned at a breathtaking pace the resultant poverty has posed question about the wisdom of conventional strategies for nation development both government and the private sector had discussed this issues at forums and conferences but have not found a solution to it. Its continued existence had been linked to lack of power supply and financial empowerment in Nigeria.

According to Aganga (2010), the out come of unemployment in Nigeria had led to various crimes and social vices such as prostitution, internet scam political violence, kidnapping, militancy (in the Niger delta) drug, trafficking armed robber e.t.c the continued existence of these vices has been linked to the scarcity of job in Nigeria.
Aganga (2010) opines that prostitution for instance rose during the mid 1990s with female Nigeria youth being trafficked to Italy, internet scan had also been on the increase in recent years, political violence kidnapping and other vices had also been increasing recently.

However, alarm have been raised over the socio-economic situation of young people and the prospects of creating additional livelihood opportunities for them this is because the youths constitute a major part of the labour force and they have innovative ideals which among other factors are important in the development process of the country.

According to Gullins et al (2008) unemployment is a condition in which a person is able and willing to work normally depend upon his earning to provide the necessities of life for himself and family is unable to obtain a gainful employment.

According to Karl Pribram (2008) unemployment is a condition of the labour market in which the supply of labour power is greater than the number of available openings.

Ebere Nwero (2010)posited that most time many blame the government for unemployment failing to see that in its quest to alleviate the problem of unemployment in the country the federal government initiated variety of programs to create job for the youths and other unemployment people though the Nigeria government has tried a numbers of different measure to get as many youths as possible in to work through the N.Y.S.C. orientation programme that runs for the duration of one year, yet the fact remains that many youths are still unable to get job to help deal with this issues, yet the problem persists the rate of unemployment in the country now is alarming and it is obvious that the Nigeria government is helpless in the face of this intimidating challenge, the youths in this case are most affected the majority of youths are jobless they parade around all over the cities looking for jobs which are not there this is why the numbers of unemployment is most in the cities than the rural areas. “Ebere” further says that the problem of unemployment can be solved when the youths discard their old and wrong? dependence belief? That once you are a graduate or school leaver government will give you a job people with this mentality get frustrated and disappointed should get rid of such thought.

This research was conceptualized against the backdrop of the increasing social and economic problem associated with the youths unemployment in Odeda community.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

The issues of the out come of unemployment in Nigeria has led to various crime and social vices such as prostitution internet scam, political violence kidnapping, armed rubbery among them however, the continual existence of these vices has been linked to the scarcity of job in Nigeria. Hence unemployment has been a thorn in the flesh of the youths of Odeda Local Government.

It is therefore against this backdrop that the research work seeks to critically examine the effect of unemployment on youths in Nigeria society of Odeda Local Government Abeokuta, Ogun State.

1.3.1 Research Objectives

The general objective of this study was to explore the effect of unemployment on ypuths in Nigeria. Nigeria voices from Odeda community.

1.3.2 Specific objectives are to:
  1. Explore youths’ views on the processes that they identify as necessary for them to be employed.ii). Assess employers perception about youth unemployment.
  2. Determine to what extent does education prepare youth for self-employment.
  3. Determine the ways to solve youths’ unemployment problem in Nigeria.

1.4 Research Questions

  1. What are the youths’ views on the processes that they identify as necessary for them to be employed?
  2. What are the employers’ perceptions about youth unemployment?
  3. To what extent does education prepare youth for self-employment?
  4. What are the ways for solving the youth unemployment problem in Nigeria?

1.5 Scope of the Study

This study was conducted in Odeda area specifically in Odeda community in which the data was collected from different respondents such as Youths, Teachers and Employers of different institutions where by the aim is to secure information as guided by specific objectives of this study such as, to explore youths views on the processes that they identify as necessary for them to be employed, to assess Employers’ perception about youth unemployment as well as determination of ways for solving the youths’ unemployment problem in Nigeria.

1.5.2 Theoretical Scope

This study used two theories of employment: Human capital theory as developed by Smith, 1776/1937; Alfred Marshall, 1890/1930; and Irvin Fisher, 1906 and NeoClassical employment theories by Campbell and Brue, 1995, Davidson, 1990 to analyze the independent and dependent variables of youth unemployment in Odeda Community.

1.5.3 Content Scope

The study concentrated on two variables: The first one is challenges facing youths in the employment sector. This is independent variable and will be measured by the following factors: Youth’s level and type of education; family background and youth’s individual predisposition towards work. The second variable is characteristics of employment sector. This is the dependent variable that was measured by two factors: labor market regulations and the performance of economy and employers’ inclination about youths.

1.6 Significance of the Study

This study seeks to determine the effect of unemployment on youth in Nigeria and suggests the possible ways of solving the problem to ensure youth employment. The information on effect of unemployment on youth is very important to the government and policy makers for filling the policy gaps relating to country employments and in addressing the issue of unemployment.

The results of the study are also important to the employers and other labor market players, for understanding the source of problems resulting in youth unemployment which account for a large share of the Nigerian labor force. But also, the study provides information to the youth themselves in the country to understand the causes of youth unemployment and the possible ways to tackle it. The study also adds to the literature by filling the knowledge gaps on the roots of youth unemployment and how the problem can possibly be addressed in the country.

1.7 Definition of Key of Terms

Youth unemployment refers to young people that are out of work. Given that one of the goals of this dissertation is to analyze this segment of the population, it is worth spending time defining the two terms separately. The first step will be to explain the concept of youth, followed by the definition of unemployment.


Due to several factors, such as society, institution, culture and regulations, the definition of youth can change significantly between and within countries. The age – group associated to young people is linked to the role they have in the society, based on legal, cultural and political aspects. For example, the definition of youth varies within Italy, in the North it’s considered between 14 and 29, in the South from 14 to32 (O’Higgins, 1997).

In general, the varies definitions do not agree on the lower or upper bound of the agegroup. However, in economic terms the lower limit is set at the period of age when mandatory schooling ends, 15 years old. This dissertation will use the notation provided by UN, according to which: Youth comprises the age-group between fifteen and twenty- four inclusive’ (O’Higgins, 1997, p.6). Even though this age range embraces teenagers and young adults, this distinction will not be considered relevant for the purpose of this study.


Unemployment is defined as a situation where someone of working age is not able to get a job but would like to be in full time employment. Note: If a Mother left work to bring up a child or if someone went into higher education, they are not working but would not be classed as unemployed as they are not actively seeking employment (Tejvan, 2010)

O’Higgins (1997) defined unemployment as a multidimensional concept which involves economic, politic and social dimensions. It is a difficult concept to define and measure since it depends on the economy of the areas, social settings, and culture and education system. According to the international labor organization, unemployment refer to those people who have not worked more than one hour during the short reference period but who are available for and actively Seeking work, due to the different understanding about the concept also (C.M.Ambilikile, 2004) defined unemployment as the number of people in a country who are willing and able to work but are unable to find jobs.

1.8 Chapter Summary

The objective of this study was to assess the effect of unemployment on youth in Nigeria: – voices from Odeda community. Following the established aim of this research this chapter consists of the following; the introduction, background information, statement of the problem, scope of the study, geographical scope, theoretical scope, content scope, time scope, population scope, significant of the study, not only that but also the study addressed four specific objectives as follows, to Explore youths’ views on the processes that they identify as necessary for them to be employed, to assess employers perception about youth unemployment, to determine to what extent does education prepare youth for self-employment, to determine the ways for solving the youth unemployment problem in Nigeria, also it presents the research questions, definition of key terms which includes youth and unemployment definition. Chapter 2 presents the theoretical and empirical literature. This is followed by chapter 3 that presents research methodologies. Chapter 4 dwells on data processing and data analysis and the last chapter; chapter 5 presents data output as well as recommendations.

Chapter Five

Summary, Discussion, Conclusion and Recommendation

5.1 Discussion

If youths are considered as national asset and that many nations depend on their youths, it is high time that the government through the Ministry of Education and Vocational Training (MoEVT) become serious about the providing quality education to youths in order to inculcate in them the necessary knowledge, skills and positive attitude towards employment. However, if the Ministry of Education and Vocational Training does not ensure that youths are getting quality education, Nigerian youths and the future adults will not be successful in their lives. Despite the continued and increased efforts by international community on extending jobs to youths, education institutions continue to provide education that is incongruent to self employment or access to employment.
Thus, research on youths’ views on the processes that they identify as necessary for them to be employed and employers’ perception about youth unemployment is needed to understand the key reasons for youths’ unemployment and suggestions for improvement. When we come to know more on youths’ views on the processes that they identify as necessary for them to be employed and employers’ perception about youth unemployment, we will be in a better position to efficiently and effectively deal with youth unemployment in Nigeria.

The present study attempted to address this need by assessing employers’ perception about youth unemployment; determine the extent to which education prepares youth for self employment; and determine the ways for solving the youth unemployment problem in Nigeria. For this reason, this study is significant in terms of its potential to contribute to the gap in the literature.

5.2 Conclusion

The study has assessed the effect of unemployment on youth in Nigeria and has revealed that hindrance toward youth employment are:- corruption, nepotism and tribalism, few job opportunities, high competition, high requirement of experience, lack of capital, lack of entrepreneurship skills, low investment in industries, poor education system and lack of experience. This implies that youth unemployment are accelerated by both social factors, economic factors, political factors and demographic factor as the findings have revealed.

It has being observed that necessary processes for youth employability in any place are: quality education, entrepreneurial skills, work experience and influential parent. It implies that parents have more influence to their children starting on giving them quality education, capital and advice on using the knowledge they acquired for development. It has being observed that the most important criteria which employers consider when employing youths are: – Capacity to work, Age, Education and experience, hard working of youth and Nationality of the applicant. This means that students who are not yet employed have to go on studying in order to acquire necessary qualification needed by the most of employers.

The reasons which make employers to prefer recruiting the adults than youths were:- Working experiences and Trust worth, they found that adults have more working experience than youths but also are more likely trust worth than youths.

In what ways does the education system in Nigeria prepare youths for employment or self employment the findings shown that are through, field exposure from year one to year three, emphasize more on studio work and in a real world simulation like urban planning, encourage on study tours, it insist to review and develop curriculum which are relevant to labour needs in the industries , provide knowledge and skills that student can apply for self employment like project planning management and through attending seminars and workshop.

The teachers, employers and youths suggested that there is need of quality education, quality employment policy, financial support, creation of more jobs in order to solve unemployment problem among the youths in Nigeria. This implies that employment depends on many factors that can add more employment to the youths as seen above.

5.3 Recommendations

Basing on the findings of the study and the conclusion, the following recommendations are made in order to increase employment to youths and make them continue deliver services to the people in the study area for community and national development.

To emphasize more on practical training in each stage of learning

There is a need of emphasizing on practical training in each stage of learning where by the Government should give order to each education institution to implement the use of this system as a means of teaching the students competent skills which can enable them to be employed or self employed and hence reduce youths unemployment.

To improve quality of education

The government should improve the education by formulating system of education which are more quality to enable the students get quality education which can help to increase employability to the youths and match with skills needed in a labour markets and finally it implement the millennium development goals.

To introduce entrepreneurship training in each college

Both non-government organization and government organizations should emphasize on entrepreneurship education provision in each college so as to enable the students get entrepreneurial skills which help them to employ themselves hence reduce youth unemployment.

To increases power in fighting against corruption

The government should increase more power in fighting against corruption because it seems that the main hindrance toward youth’s employment is persistent of corruption. Therefore there are need of increasing power in fighting corruption which seen as an obstacle to youth employment and development. Whereby the ant-corruption institution should work positively to solve the proceeding problem.

To eliminate the need of high need of experiences to first job seekers applicants

The results shown that the high need of experiences is another hindrance to employment, because the most of vacancies announced need high experience while the graduates have no such qualification because they are fresh from schools so they do not have such qualification therefore the employers must see this in more consideration.

To improve domestic industries

There is need of increasing more effort on improving the domestic industries because the present of many industries will increase employment hence youth employment. The institution which deals with trade and industries should emphasize the government to establish more industries so as to increase employment and the economy of the country.

To insist the financial institutions to soften loan conditions among youths

The financial institutions should soften loan conditions to youths instead of requesting collateral such as house and land, but it must also consider their

To stop the style of each institution to copy others are doing and provide methods that develop student’s talents

It is seemed that the students take similar course since many colleges have similar course hence there are need of stopping b this style because it leads to high competition in employment. For better analysis and assessment of the youth unemployment in Nigeria and the world in general, I recommend similar study to be undertaken in Nigeria. I further recommend the integration between the community, Government and Non -governmental organizations to take care about the ways of solving this problem as being proposed in this study and in other known researches of similar studies in order to combat youth unemployment problem.

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