Former Nigerian Envoy to Algeria and Philippines, Nnamdi Onochie, has lamented the worsening rates of unemployment in Nigeria despite electoral promises of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led federal government to create about two million jobs to reduce joblessness in the country.
Onochie, who declared his interest to run for the position of President of Nigeria in the coming 2023 general elections on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in an interview with DAILY POST on Wednesday, regretted the unemployment figure released by National Bureau of Statistics.
He pointed out that a dismal figure is 53.4 percent of those in the age bracket of 15-24 years, out of a total of 69. 7 million employable persons while in the higher age bracket of 24-35 years, more than 33. 3 percent of the population were out of work.
He also regretted that despite these grave figures, the pressures on the cost of living in the country rose by more than 27% in the periods from the last quarter of 2020 to third quarter of 2021.
According to Onochie, “the higher rise in the cost of living and inflation in the economy means that the level of suffering citizens has remained very high. Prices of several products, especially food items, have skyrocketed. Altogether, the poverty index for Nigerians has continued to rise.”
The PDP presidential hopeful further regretted that efforts by the Buhari-led federal government have not yielded non-corresponding results, and the situation has worsened.
“With the end of the year 2021, with less than 14 months to be actual date of presidential and general elections to begin on February 18, 2023, it is time for those at the receiving end, the voters and populace, to get ready to hold those in office fully accountable,” he added.
Continuing, he stated, “They must be voted out of office to install those with reasonable programs that will increase the jobs numbers, improve the economic situation, and reduce the sufferings and hardships of the common Nigerian.
“The opportunity provided by the election circle must be availed of and be used by the populace, especially the youths and women, to change the political party in office at the presidential level and all other levels.”