Akwa Ibom: NBS report shouldn't be politicised, says AILM

Akwa Ibom: NBS report shouldn't be politicised, says AILM

- Reactions continue to trail the latest National Bureau of Statistics report

- The report had revealed the rise of unemployment across the country

- A group in Akwa Ibom is concerned that the report has been politicised in the state

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A foremost sociopolitical group in Akwa Ibom state, Akwa Ibom Liberation Movement (AILM), has frowned at attempts to politicise the recent Labor Force Statistics: Unemployment and Underemployment Report published by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

The group said it is uncharitable to use it as a yardstick to measure the performance of the Udom Emmanuel administration.

AILM, made this known during a press briefing in Uyo, on Tuesday, August 18.

Akwa Ibom: NBS report shouldn't be politicised, says AILM
Governor Emmanuel's efforts in job creation have been commended. Photo Credit: @aksgovt
Source: Facebook

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The group also commended Governor Emmanuel for creating an array of job opportunities through public-private partnerships, business support schemes and agricultural programmes.

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Secretary-General of AILM, Darlington Udobong said: “Unemployment is a global phenomenon which became worse during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“This problem predates the current administration as such it is uncharitable to attempt to politicise such a report, given the superlative track record Governor Udom Emmanuel has in rigorously pursuing policies that stimulate economic growth, provide job opportunities and create wealth for Akwa Ibom citizens.”

He wondered how the agency arrived at its highly contentious conclusions on a state that has, for the past five years, been consistent in creating direct and indirect employment opportunities for its citizens.

While acknowledging the importance of NBS and its routine reports, the group decried attempts by mischief makers to use such statistical data, which has severally been shown not to reflect the reality on ground, to engage in fruitless debates and arguments.

“Going beyond unproductive debates on social media over NBS report, it is on record that since his emergence in 2015, Governor Udom Emmanuel has worked assiduously to put tangible projects that has greatly reduced unemployment in the state.

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“So far, more than 18 industries are operating or would soon begin operation in the state, including the Jubilee Syringe factory, King Size Flour Mill, Metering Solutions Company, Ibom Agricon Rice Mill, St. Gabriel Coconut factory, Ibom Airlines and others,” the group said.

Udobong reasoned that since Akwa Ibom state government started its industrialisation drive, it has become a hot spot for employment seekers from all over Nigeria.

A document uploaded by the NBS on its Twitter account on Friday, August 14, indicates that Nigeria's unemployment rate rose to 27.1% in the second quarter of 2020 from the 23.1% recorded in Q3 2018.

Legit.ng reported earlier that the NBS also said the underemployment rate increased from 20.1% in Q3 2018 to 28.6% in Q2 2020.

Meanwhile, official reports have it that the United Kingdom (UK) has been plunged into economic recession due to the harsh commercial effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

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According to a statement by the UK's Office for National Statistics (ONS), the country faced its worst Gross domestic Product (GDP) contraction in 11 years especially between April and June 2020.

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