Job Creation, Empowerment, Key To Fight Insecurity

Length or breadth, nexus exists between unemployment and insecurity.  This is predicated on the logic that unemployment  exacerbates inequalities and fuel a sense of resentment. Thus unemployed and underemployed people are often more at risk of depression, anxiety and stress. This can  occasionally lead to violence.

A 19th Century American social worker was quoted as saying: “of all the aspects of social misery, nothing is so heartbreaking as unemployment.”

A look at the rate of violent activities in the world would suggest that countries with high employment rates and entrenched social security systems tend to be more stable and secured than those with high unemployment rates and absence of social security.

Little wonder most countries of Europe, United States, Canada, Australia, Japan, and other developed nations, virtually have no incidents of insurgency when compared to countries in Africa, parts of Asia or even in Latin America.

For some years now, Nigeria has been grappling with rising youth unemployment.

The explosion in school enrollment figures which has also meant the inability of the number of graduates and school leavers being turned out to keep pace with available job opportunities, has led to spike in crime rate with the emergent insecurity (especially, insurgency) that is now apparently threatening the very foundations of the country.

Equally worrisome, is the fact that governments at various levels do not seem to have done enough to halt the prevailing high unemployment rates across the country.

The alarm raised by the then Emir of Kano, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi concerning the dangers or put differently, security implications inherent in  breeding uneducated, unskilled and jobless “al majiri” youths in Northern Nigeria, did not seem to have been taken seriously. Emir Sanusi was eventually deposed and the rest is history.

The southeast governments as well as those of the northeast, the northwest and other parts of the country should as a matter of urgency,  prioritise job creation and youth empowerment.

This will deplete the capacity of insurgents and those involved in violent activities to recruit youths for their subversive purposes. It will also reduce poverty and social inequalities that can spark criminal or violent indulgence.

The fight against insecurity does not only begin and end with procuring more weapons for security agencies, or increasing the number of service personnel.

The saying that an idle mind is the devil’s workshop must always come to mind.


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