THE EFFECT OF UNEMPLOYMENT ON THE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT OF NIGERIA
1.1 Background of the Study
As history would have it, Nigeria as a nation has experienced several forms of economic, political and social unrest. In recent times, unemployment which is caused by individuals and government forces had joined the list of the social evils we experience in Nigeria today. The issue of unemployment has become a world-wide phenomenon demanding for increased attention, though the impact is more devastating in developing nation (Wamukonya, 2003). According to the National Bureau of Statistics (2012), Nigeria rate of unemployment stand at 19.7%. In fact, Feridum and Akindele (2006); George and Oseni (2012); Ezie (2012) and Ede, Ndubisi, and Nwankwo (2013), identify unemployment as one of the major challenges confronting the Nigeria-economic development. The menace of unemployment in Nigeria both now and in the recent past has been an issue of great concern to the economists, policy makers, economic managers, individuals, government and many others (Bello, 2003). This earliest thinking on economic issues did not fail to give a central point of reflection on the undesirability of unemployment (Njoku and Ihugba, 2011). Unemployment has been defined as a situation where people who are willing and capable of working are unable to find suitable paid employment (Fajana, 2000). The same writer went further to say that, the higher the rate of unemployment in an economy, the higher the level of poverty and associated welfare challenges.
However, the number of people in any country is divided into two groups; the economically active and the economically inactive. According to Njoku and Ihugba (2011), the economically active group (Labour force) are the group that are willing and able to work, including those actively engaged in the production of goods and services (employed) and those who are not employed. On the other hand, the economically inactive group refers to neither people who are not looking for jobs nor those who are not capable enough as a result of health related issues. To further buttress this, International Labour Organisation (ILO) define the unemployed as numbers of the economically active population who are without work but available and seeking for work, including people who have lost their job and those who have voluntarily left work (World Bank, 1998).
The menace of unemployment is geometrically increasing and the effects falls heavily on the economic development of this nation (Nigeria). Njoku James, Eze (2011) noted that consequences of unemployment in Nigeria is not only that it has increased the rate of crime in the country, but has also affected the economic development of Nigeria. They stress further, that individuals who were meant to be economically active and contributing towards the economic development of the country are not be active in such work. This work therefore, considered to study the effect of unemployment on the economic development of Nigeria, using Nkanu West Local Government Area as a case study.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
There is an increase of unemployment level in Nigeria and at such can only be addressed by combined efforts of both individuals and the government of the country in particular and the world at large to formulate a lasting solution to it. Unemployment in Nigeria has affected the youth and the economic development of the country from a broad spectrum of socio-economic perspective. It is obvious that unemployment especially that of graduates impedes Nigeria's progress in several ways. Apart from the economic waste it brought to the nation, it also constitutes political unrest for the country (Ipaye, 1998).
According to Ezie (2012), the unemployment situation in Nigeria is disturbing and even more disheartening that the country's economic condition cannot absorb an optimal proportion of its labour force. This situation has contributed to the increase in crimes and other social vices experienced in our society in recent time, because an idle mind is always the devils workshop.
Another problem facing the employment situation in Nigeria centered on power generation (i.e. epileptic power supply hinder small scale growth and at the same time scares youths from venturing in small scale business among other things). The poor power generation in Nigeria has contributed to the level of unemployed people. Despite all the efforts made by both the past and present administration to salvage the problem of epileptic power supply, the country has experienced little or no change. Since the problem of power cannot be tackled, the industries, institutions and agencies which are expected to provide the much needed employment flaw out of the country for some better opportunities, thus leaving our work force unemployed. This research work is determined to address some of these challenges through its recommendations.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
The general objective of this study is to assess the effect of unemployment on the economic development of Nigeria, but other specific objectives are given below:
1. To ascertain the extent to which unemployment impedes economic development in Nigeria.
2. To identify factors that cause unemployment in Nigeria.
3. To investigate the extent to which government has helped in tackling unemployment problems in Nigeria.
4. To determine programmes that can help to tackle unemployment problems in Nigeria.
1.4 Research Questions
1. to what extent does unemployment impede economic development in Nigeria?
2. What are the factors that cause unemployment in Nigeria?
3. To what extent does government help in tackling unemployment problems in Nigeria?
4. What programmes can help to tackle unemployment problems in Nigeria?
1.5 Research Hypothesis
Ho: Unemployment to a lesser extent impedes economic development in Nigeria.
Hi: Unemployment to a great extent impedes economic development in Nigeria.
Ho: Epileptic electric power supply, poor quality of education, Negligence of Agriculture and Corruption are not among the causes of unemployment in Nigeria.
Hi: Epileptic electric power supply, poor quality of education, Negligence of Agriculture and Corruption are among the causes of unemployment in Nigeria.
Ho: There is no significant efforts of government in tackling unemployment problem in Nigeria.
Hi: There are significant efforts of government in tackling unemployment problem in Nigeria
Ho: National Directorate of employment,(NDE), SURE P and YOUWIN among other programmes do not help to tackle unemployment problem in Nigeria.
Hi: National Directorate of employment,(NDE), SURE P and YOUWIN among other programmes help to tackle unemployment problem in Nigeria.