With the neglect of agricultural sector, rural-urban migration, wrong impression about technical or vocational education or training, corruption with its attendant grave embezzlement, rapid population, amidst others, Nigeria has recorded a 33.3% rise in unemployment rate during the fourth quarter (Q4) of 2020.
This indicates an increase from the 27.1% recorded in the second quarter of 2020 (Q2, 2020).
However, the under-employment rate declined from 28.6% in Q2, 2020 to 22.8%.
Disclosing this in a recent release by the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics, NBS, a sample of thirty-three thousand three hundred households across the country, both in urban and rural areas were surveyed.
Under this exercise, indicators such as the economically active population, labour force, unemployment and underemployment rates were computed to inform the work of policymakers and government.
According to the report, the number of persons in the economically active or working age population (15 – 64 years of age) during the fourth Quarter (Q4, 2020) was 122,049,400. Indicating a 4.3% increase in the number of persons working, than the figure recorded in Q2, 2020, which was 116,871,186.
The number of persons in the labour force (i.e., people within ages 15 -64, who are able and willing to work) was estimated to be 69,675,468. This was 13.22% less than the number persons in Q2, 2020. Of this number, those within the age bracket of 25-34 were highest, with 20,091,695 or 28.8% of the labour force.
The unemployment rate during the fourth quarter in 2020 was 33.3%, an increase from the 27.1% recorded in Q2, 2020, while the underemployment rate declined from 28.6% in Q2, 2020 to 22.8%.
The unemployment rate among rural dwellers was 34.5%, up from 28.2% in Q2, 2020, while urban dwellers reported a rate of 31.3% up from 26.4%. In the case of underemployment among rural dwellers, it declined to 26.9% from 31.5%, while the rate among urban dwellers decreased to 16.2% from 23.2% in Q2, 2020.
The total number of people in employment (i.e., people with jobs) during the reference period was 46,488,079. Of this number, 30,572,440 were full-time employed (i.e., worked 40+ hours per week), while 15,915,639 were under-employed (i.e., working between 20-29 hours per week). This figure is 20.6% less than the people in employment in Q2, 2020.
In the fourth quarter in 2020, the unemployment rate among young people (15-34years) was 42.5% up from 34.9%, while the rate of underemployment for the same age group declined to 21.0% from 28.2% in Q2, 2020. These rates were the highest when compared to other age groupings.