At least 70 per cent of the Nigerian youthful population put at 80 million are unemployed in the estimation of the National Orientation Agency (NOA) in Benue State.
State Director of NOA, Richard Abimiku, made the remark at a one-day national youth summit held in Makurdi.
It will interest you to know that Nigeria has a youthful population of about 80 million, which is about 60 per cent of its entire population.
“Although about 70 per cent of the 80 million are unemployed, it is no doubt that the most productive years of an individual’s life are when he/she is still a youth,” he said.
Abimiku noted that the development of any country hinges on the productivity of the persons within the age bracket of youth as he stressed that they are the driving force of growth and development because they provide the labour force for the production of goods and services.
“While acknowledging the efforts of some youth in a various professional field like sports, academic, ICT and entrepreneurship among others, it is important to keep youth on their toes, helping them to think and act positively despite the challenges,” Abimiku added.
Meanwhile, Professor Terhemen Aboiyar Dean, Student Affairs, Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi in his paper presentation entitled, ‘The role of youth in influencing Government policies and good governance’, maintained that the role of the youth in policymaking could not be overemphasized despite many challenges facing them.