When asked what the major threat to a nation’s security and development is, unemployment usually comes at the bottom of the list- if it even makes the list at all. People tend to focus on more “pressing” issues like terrorism, insurgency, corruption and the likes. Unemployment, however, is a major threat to any developing country and its economy.
According to the National Bureau of Statistics, the national unemployment rate in Nigeria is 23.9%, amounting to about 30 – 35 million unemployed youths. It is no wonder that Nigeria continues to battle with insecurity in the form of robbery, ethnic/youth militancy, kidnapping, and terrorism. It is almost impossible for a country to maintain security with such a high unemployment figure. Poverty, illiteracy, diseases, hunger, and hopelessness lead to extremism, upheavals, and internal unrest.
In the world today, where living an extravagant life and flaunting on social media is the new cool, humans become susceptible and vulnerable to crime when they cannot live up to expectations legally. With growing youth unemployment, the divide between the rich and the poor grows resulting in social tensions, which in turn leads to susceptibility to crime. National and world security are best enhanced when state leaders strive to reduce human vulnerabilities.
Youth unemployment, especially in Nigeria, should be paid more attention to. Unemployment creates poverty, poverty leads to insecurity and insecurity impedes development.
Security is development, and without development, there can be no security.