The Effect Of Unemployment On Youth Involvement In Kidnapping In Nigeria

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The Effect Of Unemployment On Youth Involvement In Kidnapping In Nigeria


Recently, the increase kidnapping has been very high in Nigeria. The study therefore was to investigate the effect of unemployment on youth involvement in kidnapping in Nigeria. A total sample size of sixty (40) respondents was used for the study. The research instruments such as questionnaires. interviews and observation were used to collect data for the study’.

The objectives of the study were to establish the relationship unemployment and kidnapping, the causes unemployment and solutions to the menace.

With respect to findings, it was that low socio-economic status such as poverty, lack of parenting, lack of marketable skills among others were reasons for kidnapping. And on the other hand, the recommended intervention measures were more investment in socio economic activities to curb unemployment thereby curbing kidnapping.

The study therefore recommended that government and other partner should introduce comprehensive economic and security policies to stop the problem.

Chapter One


This research will explore unemployment as the independent variable (IV) and kidnapping among the youth as the dependent variable (DV) in Nigeria. This chapter will cover the background to the study, the statement of the problem, the general objective of the study, the specific objectives of the study, the research questions, the hypothesis, significance of the study, justification of the study, scope of the study, and operational definitions.

1.1 Background to the Study

The age pattern of kidnapping is close to universal. In virtually all countries, criminal activity rises with age. peak in the late teens, then fall (e.g. Hirschi and Gottfredson 1983). For example, while the conviction rate among Swedish men aged 19 to 24 in the year 2005 amounted to 4.2 percent the corresponding figure for men aged 29 to 34 was nearly half as large. A popular explanation for the age distribution of kidnapping is that youths are more exposed to unemployment (e.g. Freeman 1996; Grogger 1998). Economists have argued that the income loss generated by unemployment lowers the opportunity cost of engaging in kidnapping (cf. Becker 1968; Ehrlich 1973). Others have hypothesized that joblessness triggers frustration and anger, which in turn may lead to violent behaviour (e.g. Agnew 1992). It has also been suggested that unemployment provides individuals with more time and opportunities to commit kidnapping (Felson 1998). Understanding the link between youth unemployment and kidnapping is not only important to help explain the age distribution of kidnapping but is also a key issue for public policy since any relationship would indicate that the social benefits of investments in labor market programs may exceed those usually claimed.

The area of juvenile kidnapping measurement is equally highly problematic. The problems of ‘measuring’ the extent or ‘rate’ of c rime are notorious and are the cause of many complaints by both academics and officials about the paucity of credible data and the need for more resources and better funded agencies to rectify the problem. As Wundersitz points out: ‘there is no national uniform data collection system’ (Wundersitz 1993: 19).

Globally, four out of every ten unemployed persons are young women or young men. In some c ountries, youth unemployment is three times higher than adult unemployment (Vremudia, 1012). Many youths have become pessimistic, feeling powerless to change their situation (Somavia, 2012). ILO 2011 report shows that one in two young persons was actively) participating in the labour market. However, unemployment is only one dimension of the youth umployment problem. Apart from high levels of unemployment, there is also a decline in the actuality of employment available to youth. Many youths end up in situations informal employment and poor working conditions. Thus the challenge is not just to create employment but to create decent work (Alabi and Alanana, 2012; ILO, 2012).

With global unemployment at very high levels, the need to place employment at the centre of economic and social policies has been realized in Africa. The 2006 national census data showed that 20.18% of the Nigerian populations were youth aged 15 — 24 years of age (UNBS Census eport 2015).

Unemployment coupled with the ever widening social gap are believed to be the reason for youths’ engagement in illegal oil bunkering, kidnapping and arms dealing in Africa (Alabi, and sagie 2006).

Gilbert (2010) equally argues that the religious crises experience in some parts of the country could be traced to high level of youth unemployment and poverty. To this end, this paper seeks of examine the nexus between youth unemployment and kidnapping and or the challenges faced while controlling kidnapping among the unemployed youths in Nigeria.

Unemployment occurs when people are without jobs and they have actively looked or work within the past four weeks. The unemployment rate is a measure of the prevalence of unemployment and it is calculated as a percentage by dividing the number of unemployed individuals by all individuals currently in the labour force (the International Labour) organization). There never occurs full employment in the country. But there are different methods of combating unemployment. There are some countries that reached a minimum Unemployment figure. A good example of this are the post-World War Il era when there was a huge economic growth occurring. E.g. the United Kingdom in the 1950s and 60s when the average unemployment rate was at about 1.6 % (John Sloman (2004) and in Australia in the 1945 government established a policy of full employment, which acted until the 1970s when the government ran out of money. The latest statistics for UK Unemployment is “The unemployment rate stands at 7.7% – down 0.1% over the quarter. 29.19 million people were in work in July to September according to the labour force survey (LFS).

The number of people employed was up by 167,000 this quarter and up by nearly 300,000 from last year.” (HRM Guide, 13 October 2020)

As anyone can derive, there is a relationship between kidnapping and unemployment. There have been lot of studies into this topic as a low level of kidnapping is socially desirable. Therefore, governments’ of all countries have tried to combat the problem of rising kidnapping levels.

A good example of the latter is post-Soviet Russia. Kidnapping in the 1980’s increased to very high levels. This was the outcome of the collapse of the Soviet Union, because with it everything, collapsed – the law enforcement systems, social security, and minimal standard of living. And, obviously, these are the perfect conditions for an outbreak of kidnapping. Extreme poverty and unpaid wages, which resulted from a suffering economy, have led to property kidnappings, theft and counterfeiting. By the early 1990s, theft, burglary, and other property kidnappings accounted for nearly two-thirds of all kidnapping in the country. There was a rapid growth of violent kidnapping, including homicides. (Kidnapping in the Soviet Era Federal Research Division, Library of Congress). n present times, though, Russia has done well in fighting this nightmare of kidnapping. There are many other countries that have fought and are still combating this problem. By the use of the example of Russia, I wanted to show that unemployment is considered a very important cause of rime in any country, together with law enforcement problems and also labour market opportunities.

An overview of unemployment in the United States since 1970 reveals several significant patterns. Unemployment in the past two decades continues a trend that began after World War Il, when the unemployment rate began to drift upward, with the composition of the unemployed hanging demographically, accompanied by a substantial change in the level of wage inflation lid its relation to unemployment in the overall economy.

Between 1950 and 1960, the unemployment rate averaged 4.5 percent, with a range between three and seven percent. Between 1960 and 1970, the average was 4.8 percent, with a range from five to eight-and-a-half percent. From 1970 to 1980, the average rose to 6.3 percent, and the range was from five to eight-and-a-half percent. Between 1980 and 1990, the average rate was a little over even percent, with a range from five to about ten percent. As of December 1994, the unemployment rate stood at 5.6 percent.

In general, statistics show certain trends in unemployment rates in the U.S. The rate of unemployment among 16 to 20-year-olds has steadily increased in recent years. The rate is highest for black teenagers, making them the hardest segment of the work force to employ. The rate of unemployment among white males between 25 and 35 has grown relative to that of older white males. The rate of unemployment among blue collar workers has increased relative to that white collar workers. Unemployment among workers without a high-school education has increased steadily relative to more educated workers. Though unemployment cuts across all socio-economic segments, in general, the unemployed worker today is most likely to be a young black male with limited skills and education.

Factors that affect unemployment rates? One important factor is the changing nature the work force. Since World War Il, and increasingly in the past two and a half decades, the J.S. work force has undergone substantial changes. A growing percentage of workers is female, while the number of older males is declining. The number of workers with high-school and +011ege educations has increased, and the “baby-boom” workers have aged, making the work force in general older.

A second factor is the change in the kind of work demanded. White collar jobs have increased, in the service and public sectors. Factory and agriculture jobs, meanwhile, have declined. Technological advances have caused an increase in the demand for educated workers, nit the supply has outstripped this demand. The result has been that the quality of jobs taken by educated workers has declined. A third factor is the sharp decline in trade union membership as blue collar jobs declined. A fourth factor influencing employment is the imposition of equal opportunity and affirmative action legislation, occupational safety and health acts, and the, computerization. On the other hand, many kidnappings go unreported simply due to a lack of confidence or rust in the official means of redress, or due to an inability by the individual or group to report the incident. In some cases, also it is simply too dangerous to report kidnappings to official authorities; he repercussions can often cause more injury to the complainant. For example, reporting fraud committed by an estranged husband could result in the loss of his employment and thus of the mount of child maintenance received. Similarly, reporting domestic abuse may increase the risk of further assault or other forms of retribution.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

The problem of chronic youth unemployment is very evident in Nigeria. Every year thousands of graduates are turned out without employments. Nigerian streets littered with youth hawkers who would have found gainful employment in some enterprises; would have demonstrated their skills and resourcefulness in organizations (UNBOS, 2015). instead youths have now shifted their attention to anti-social vices such as criminal acts, for instance, stealing, armed robbery, burglary, prostitution alcoholism, domestic violence, social, religious and civil unrest and suicide to mention but few etc. The ILO (2007) report showed that he proportions of Nigeria’s unemployment are steadily increasing and that the number of those without jobs remained at an all-time high at more than 195 million, or 6.3 per cent, in 2015. For instance during that period of 2016, the large number of youths who are unemployed is capable undermining democratic practice as they constitute a serious threat if engaged by the political lass for clandestine activities (Adepegba, 2011; Ibrahim, 2011; Lartey, 2011; Olatunji and 2011). Job security is an all-encompassing condition in which the individual citizen of a country lives in an environment where equal job opportunities are provided for all citizens and 10t exceptionally for the rich and those with the highest connection. It should also entail a situation whereby one can have access to the type of job he/she is trained to do; and which gives individual job satisfactions. Unemployment describes the condition of people who are without obs.

Unemployment has generated many controversial issues particularly in the economic sector where more than half of the youth population is jobless. The problem of unemployment is a multi-dimensional one which includes social, economic, political and religious the challenge of social and kidnapping control become a serious issue as the rate of unemployment) becomes increasingly unchecked (Alanana, 2003; Oni 2007). Unemployed with no hope of a better tomorrow is need for this research.

1.3 Purpose of the Study

To find out the effect of unemployment on youth involvement in kidnapping in Nigeria.

1.4 Objectives of the Study

  1. To identify the causes of unemployment and kidnapping among the youths in Nigeria
  2. To examine the effect of unemployment and kidnapping among youths in Nigeria
  3. To examine the solutions to unemployment and kidnapping among youths in Nigeria

1.5 Research Questions

  1. What are the causes of unemployment and kidnapping among the youths in Nigeria?
  2. What are the effects of unemployment and kidnapping among youths in Nigeria?
  3. What is the relationship between unemployment and kidnapping among youths in Nigeria?

1.6 Significance of the study

The study will help the community in Giwa Kaduna state which was the precise study location and Nigeria in general to identify better employment ways and improve on the rate of kidnappings among the youth.

The study will help policy makers to design workable solutions to better kidnapping prevention following the results to bridge the gaps in the existing legal structures.

The study will also add value to the existing body of knowledge by stimulating new areas for further research through the findings and subsequent recommendations for unemployment and kidnapping among the youth.

1.7 Scope of the Study

The content of the study is limited to unemployment and kidnapping among the youth in Giwa Kaduna state to study the specific objective and answer the research questions regarding Nigeria. The study will base on unemployment theory as advanced by Adepegba, 2019; Irahim, 2011;Lartey 2019; Olatunji and Abioye, 2019). The role of unemployment in influencing kidnapping in Giwa, Kaduna state is attributed to lack of jobs, poverty and culture, government policy e.t.c which results to killings, theft and terrorism.

1.8 Operational Definition


Unemployment refers to failure to obtain a job at the ruling wage rate despite one’s willingness and ability to work.


Youth is the time of life when one is young, but often means the time between childhood and adulthood (maturity).

1.9.Organization of the Study

This paper is arranged in a way which sequentially answers the questions raised under the introductory part. Thus there would be five chapters in which Chapter One deals with introductory aspects namely, background of the study area, Objectives of the study Statement of the problem, Significance of the study, scope of the study and limitations throughout this paper. Chapter two would be dedicated to the review of related literature consisting scientific review and empirical review. Chapter three covers the methods used during data collection and data analysis. Chapter four includes finding and discussion part of the study. The last chapter incorporated the conclusion and recommendation part of the research.

Chapter Five

Summary, Conclusions and Recommendations

5.1 Summary

What are the causes of unemployment and kidnapping among the youth in Nigeria?

According to Egunjobi (2015). Youth unemployment is the unemployment of young people, defined by the United Nations as 15—24 years old. An unemployed person is defined as someone who does not have a job but is actively seeking work. In order to qualify as unemployed for official and statistical measurement, the individual must be without employment, willing and able to work, of the officially designated ‘working age’ and actively searching for a position. Youth unemployment rates are historically four to five times more than the adult rates in every country in the world.

Generally, the high youth unemployment and kidnapping in Nigeria and Africa at large can be attributed to the slow economic growth and small formal labor markets, high population growth rate, lack of sufficient experience and skills, lack of decent work, the rigid education system, rural-urban migration, limited social networks, youth’s limited access to capital support systems et cetera.

The poor attitude towards certain jobs that both young people in employment and unemployed exhibit is also partly responsible for the youth problems, MTN’s company youth segment manager says that on average, about 70 percent of the young people the company employs to man their call centers show commitment to the work but 30 percent will care less about their output at work since this is not a permanent placing for them in the company. The30 percent will therefore be slow and strictly work within the specified working hours. He also attributes the problem to the education system which is largely theoretical and therefore does not quite prepare young people for the working environment.

Another cause of the high unemployment rate in Nigeria is the societal and cultural aspect that generally encourages young people, particularly the girl child to continue depending on parental support even at an old age.

The end result is that many of Nigeria’s youth do not have the capacity to think for themselves or let alone find creative ways of earning a living.

(2014) lists broken homes and low education attainment as some of the causes of delinquency, since most of the boys were from dysfunctional families. Some boys had been orphans without guardians before their arrests, others had single or divorced parents, and some had parents in major differences, others parents’ or guardians were alcoholics who could not offer good parenthood. For example, among the 40 randomly sampled, 7 had parents who had separated, 6 youths’ mothers had died, 14 were fatherless (fathers died or were unknown to them having been born out of wedlock), while 8 had no parents It all: were either total orphans or never knew both their parents having been abandoned when young. On education level, it was established that out of these 40 young convicts, 28; (67.5%) lid not go beyond class six primary with their schooling.

Lack of Qualifications. Young people without any skills are much more likely to be unemployed structural unemployment) A report by Centre for Cities suggest there is a correlation between ‘youth unemployment and poor GCSE results in Math’s and English. To some extent the service sector has offered more unskilled jobs such as bar work, supermarket checkout and waiters. however, the nature of the labor market is that many young people lack the necessary skills and raining to impress employers.

Corruption, which has permeated the entire social structure of Nigeria, has robbed the country of developing a vibrant economic base. Funds meant for development projects have been misappropriated, diverted, or embezzled and stashed away in foreign banks, while some incompetent and corrupt bureaucrats and administrators in the public enterprise and parastatals lave liquidated these organizations (Okafor, 2015). The point being made here is that the collaboration of the political elites, local and foreign contractors in the inflation of contract fees lave robbed Nigeria of the chances of using more than $500 billion estimated revenue from the sale in the last 50 years to develop a vibrant economy that would have created jobs for the youths in various sectors of the economy. The ruling (political) class failed because they replaced the vision, policy and strategy, which should be the thrust of every leadership with transactions (contract award and other mundane money-related activities), as each successive took turns to prey on the nation’s wealth, by using public power, resources, good will, utilities, instrument of abuse, and personal gains (Okafor, 2005). Thus, crippling the economy and engendering and exacerbating unemployment which creates abject poverty, hungerAnd frustration.

What are the effects of unemployment and kidnapping amongst the youth in Nigeria?

Decline in quality of life depends largely on family income, insecurity and conflict. Decline in access to shelter, education and health care, nutrition reduced which ultimately led to reduction in life span. The youth now lack the capacity to access health services, lack leadership and management skills, are prone to poverty et cetera because they are unable to engage in meaningful and gainful employment. Many of them have also resorted to corrupt tendencies in order to quickly go up the ladder of success. To them, the meagre sums that they earn are a justification for this form of behaviour which is a vice that Nigeria needs to get rid of. The youth have also lost faith in the capacity of their country to offer them the necessary protection against exploitative employers.

Youth joblessness also implies missed opportunities in the human resources to produce goods Include services. In addition, smaller tax revenues result from a smaller tax base for income tax and indirect taxes such as the value added tax. A further implication is related to security. An increase of one percentage point in the ratio of people ages 20-25 to people ages 30-35 increases the likelihood of conflict such as civil unrest or war by 7 per cent. Higher kidnappings also have a direct economic cost in terms of loss of foreign direct investment.

Pension over taxes rise Unemployment also brings up discontent and frustration amongst the paying citizens. In order to meet the demands of the unemployment fund the government many a times may have to increase the taxes thus giving way to restlessness amongst the tax paying citizens.

Employment gaps to further complicate the situation the longer the individual is out of job the more difficult it becomes to find one. Employers find employment gasps as a negative aspect. No one wants to hire a person who has been out of work for some time even when there’s no fault of the individual per say.

What are the solutions undertaken to curb unemployment and kidnapping in Nigeria?

Establish strict recruitment policies, there should be standard recruitment procedures embedded in a given Government policy. These should be strictly followed by both public and private. The procedures should ensure that all positions are advertised by employers and that these are offered on merit to the best candidate. The complaint by many young people today is that academic merit and general credibility have now been shoved to the back in the recruitment process. The Public service has been criticized ‘or the delays in its recruitment process; on average, it takes approximately one year for one to now the results of any interview conducted by a Government Agency. These practices have left many young unemployed people frustrated and denied them the opportunity to engage in meaningful employment.

Establish national youth development groups, given the fact that many Government offices at 311b county level are underutilized; youth development groups can be established at village level in every sub-country. These groups can engage in different projects such as commercial agriculture, agroprocessing- fish farming, value addition, carpentry, metal works and metal fabrication, tailoring and design, art and crafts and such other projects that promote skills development and can income to their young members. The youth should be enlightened on number of things which include the opportunities presented by vocational institutions in terms creating employment, the potential of Nigeria’s informal sector, the reality of rural-urban migration et cetera. Many youths still hold the view that there is no future without university and therefore have a negative attitude towards technical and vocational institutions Which have helped so many world economies develop over the years. Such programs would enable young people in employment to work hard and sustain their jobs and therefore earn promotions at work which are usually a preserve of the older generation. They will also be beneficial to the unemployed young people by enabling them to embrace vocational work and raining which is ordinarily looked at as a preserve of the “uneducated” provide young people with financial facilities

New directions in the education system, the high youth unemployment levels in Nigeria are partly because of the mismatch of courses taught by education institutions and the actual skills by the job market. The Nigerian education system, particularly at secondary school level, has constantly been criticized by different stakeholders because of its concentration on the theoretical rather than the practical aspects.

5.2 Conclusion

Shown above, youth unemployment and underemployment continue to impose heavy social economic costs and result in the loss of opportunities for economic in Kaduna and Nigeria at large. A World Bank publication entitled, “African Development Indicators 2014/2015: Youth and Employment in Nigeria-the Potential, the problem, the Promise”, notes that success in addressing youth unemployment in Nigeria will not achieved and sustained through fragmented and isolated interventions. Instead, an arching for addressing the youth employment challenge is the need for an integrated strategy or rural development, and job creation.

5.3 Recommendation

Parents should enroll their children to school in order to acquire education to increase on their skills and the ability to do white collar jobs and reduce their dependency on their parents.

The government should construct more industries in the area to attract youth employment.

The government should build more technical institutions in the area.

Youth attitude programs should be encouraged to enable the youth attain a positive attitude towards work.
Sensitization about the values of education should be emphasized to parents this is to enable them to enrol the girls to school there preventing early marriages.

The government should put a ban on cheap alcohol to curb the problem of alcoholism.

The Ministry of Education needs to formulate a policy which would allow for the revision of the education curriculum after certain definitive periods. The secondary school education should particularly entail practical training on different aspects. If such reforms are made, the education system would be able to mold young people whose skills are required by the labor market an dthus enhance their employability.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why are there so many kidnapping cases in Nigeria?

Youth joblessness and unemployment is one of the root cause of the high number of kidnapping cases in Nigeria. Nigeria has a very high rate of unemployment and the rate keeps growing everyday.

Why is unemployment so high in the Niger Delta?

This higher rate of unemployment among the youths, especially in areas like the Niger Delta and the South East has also been exploited by politicians and the so called big men in our society who employ these people as thugs and muscle men during elections.

How does the incidence of kidnapping affect society?

In a society where the incidence of kidnapping is high, there is usually an atmosphere of fear and a general lack of trust, this tends to limit people’s lives and actions which translates to reduced economic activities. Everybody tends to be very cautious in this kind of environment, and there is usually a form of curfew that exists in such areas.

What are the causes of kidnapping?

Poverty is one of the major driving forces that usually pushes people to go into the act of kidnapping. The effects of poverty in a particular population cannot be overemphasized. Poverty and lack over a long period of time usually leads to frustration, depression and a feeling of helplessness. 

How many people in Nigeria are unemployed?

According to the Bureau of Statistics, 38% of the population that falls within the employable age are unemployed and 65% of Nigerian youth face unemployment as at September 2016.

How does unemployment affect the crime rate in Nigeria?

Kayode et al (2014) stress that unemployment in Nigeria has led to hooliganism, armed robbery, kidnapping, youth restiveness, communal crisis, uprising, vandalism, kidnapping and assassination. … The prevalence of cybercrime in Nigeria continues to increase as the use of the internet is popularized among youths.

Is youth unemployment a threat to Nigeria’s Democracy?

On conflict approach on peace advocacy. I am convinced that the Governments. youth unemployment at over 50%. From 2011 to growth rate in Nigeria. From all indications, youth a rea l danger a nd a threat to Nigeria’s democracy. point in time. Against this background, there is the streets. Granted, there may not be a quick fix to this

Why is Nigeria’s unemployment crisis caused by oil?

To explain its unemployment crisis, Nigeria’s experts look to the prominence of oil as the country’s disproportionately dominant industry. The nation’s economy has neglected other potentially job-creating fields in order to feed oil.

Why is the unemployment rate in Niger so high?

With a population of more than 13 million, Niger’s unemployment rate is at 11.7% since 2010. There are many factors leading to this, but things like political despair from corruption, lack of job opportunities for the youth and inefficient allocation of resources are the top reasons why Niger faces these high unemployment rates (Knoema).

How does oil dependence exacerbate unemployment in Nigeria?

Oil dependence exacerbates unemployment in Nigeria. To explain its unemployment crisis, Nigeria’s experts look to the prominence of oil as the country’s disproportionately dominant industry. The nation’s economy has neglected other potentially job-creating fields in order to feed oil.

What is the unemployment rate in Nigeria 2019?

The situation worsens for young Nigerians, as the unemployment rate for people between the ages of 15 and 35 hit 55.4% in 2019. Oil dependence exacerbates unemployment in Nigeria.

How many Nigerians have been hired by the federal government in Nigeria?

Since 2018, it has hired 1,300 Nigerians, and it aims to bring that number up to 2,000 by the end of 2020. Unemployment in Nigeria is a growing concern that stems from the country’s many political and economic issues.

What is the current unemployment rate in Nigeria?

18.8 (Q4) 23.1 (Q4) N/A. In comparison to the other 181 countries of the world with up-to-date labor data, Nigeria’s unemployment rate ranks as the 41st country with the highest unemployment rate. Applying the International Labor Organization’s metric, Nigeria’s recent unemployment rate is 11.7.

Who is the worst hit by unemployment in Nigeria?

The data also reveals the worst-hit are Nigerian youths with over 13.9 million currently unemployed. In Q3 2018, the last time the report was released there were about 13.1 million Nigerian youths unemployed. Youth between the ages 15-24 have about 6.8 million Nigerians out of jobs and another 7.1 million also unemployed.

Which country has the highest unemployment rate in Africa?

The oil producer surpassed South Africa on a list of 82 countries whose unemployment rates are tracked by Bloomberg. Namibia still leads the list with 33.4%.

How many Nigerians are unemployed between 15-24 years?

Youth between the ages 15-24 have about 6.8 million Nigerians out of jobs and another 7.1 million also unemployed. The highest unemployment rate was recorded for youths between 15 – 24 years 40.8%, This is followed by ages 25 – 34 years at 30.7%.

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