- Nigeria's unemployment rate climbed to 33.3% in December, according to the National Bureau of Statistics' fourth-quarter unemployment figures
- The report also revealed that Nigeria's jobless rate has more than doubled in the previous five years, placing it among the world's highest
- However, it appears that the administration believes there are many employed Nigerians who are not included in the statistics
President Muhammadu Buhari's administration has faulted the National Bureau of Statistics' latest jobless figures, claiming that they do not truly represent reality in Nigeria.
Ajuri Ngelale, senior special assistant to the president on public affairs stated this while speaking on Arise TV on Monday, 27 September, 2021.
According to him, there are millions of employed Nigerians by Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises across the country tabulated as unemployed and under the poverty line, when in fact they are employed and above the poverty line.
Ajuri Ngelale said:
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"This isn't about making the government seem good or terrible; it's about ensuring that you have correct data so that you can precisely adjust your economic actions in terms of economic development plans.
"What we have today, and the Corporation Affairs Commission (CAC) has been quite forthcoming about it. They informed Nigerians, look, there are 40 million informal MSME in Nigeria that are not registered with the CAC.
"So, you go the market across the country, you will see people doing business having their aid, a boy or a girl, they are paying salaries to this people, and they are also paying their own salary. But the way they are currently tabulated in the country today by the NBS is that they are unemployed and having zero income which means they are under the poverty line.
"When the world bank and international Monetary Fund and some these development banks wants our population data they base their figures on NBS data and the mistake continues and this shows the very serious problems we have."
Ajuri further revealed plans are on the way to rejig how the employment figures are calculated. He said:
Imagine in 2015, we have 8 percent unemployment figures, which is about the 140-150 million of the working population are you saying only 12 million are unemployed? Accurate data is a problem
While we understand the unemployment problem we have in the country, is grippling, we are assessing this issues. But we also recognised, where we have a bifurcated situation, in which in one hand when it comes to population related data, despite the fact there is no census in recent years, we have real issues about factoring in the informal sector in our unemployement statitics as a country and that is a fact and we have talked about this openly.
The SSA further revealed President Buhari last year approved the payment of salaries to 1 million Nigerians working in struggling MSMEs across the country.
The funds he said, were paid directly to the workers digitally to avoid the owners syphoning the funds.
Buhari have committed so much to medium and large scale industries, across all sectors, the president also through survival funds, went to the grassroots to make sure those in the lower economic ladder also got grants not loans, we also stepped in to pay the salaries of over 1 million workers struggling business across the country.
Unemployment Finally Over as Buhari's Govt Opens New Job Application Portal for Graduates
The federal government has made a decisive move to curb unemployment among Nigerian youths as it opened the application portal for the Nigeria Jubilee fellow programme, a partnership between the government and the UNDP.
The scheme intends to annually employ not less than 20,000 fresh Nigerian graduates who are committed to contributing to the country's economic development
It plans to connect talented graduates with local job opportunities that use their experience while also equipping them with world-class practical knowledge and needed skills.