Nigerian government blames Asians for the soaring unemployment in Nigeria

EYEAFRICA TV: Abuja, NIGERIA:- The Nigerian government on Wednesday expressed worry that expatriates especially Asians are taking over jobs in the country, saying it is responsible for the soaring number of unemployed youths in the country.

The latest report by Nigeria Bureau of Statistics (NBS) put the rate of unemployment in the country at 33 per cent.

Nigeria’s Minister of Interior, Chief Rauf Aregbesola, while declaring open a stakeholders’ meeting on expatriate quota administration in Abuja on Wednesday, said uncontrolled activities of foreigners in the country were starving Nigerian youths of employment opportunities.

Aregbesola said: “I have a good cause to say that this meeting has been long overdue in the sense that its outcomes will tie up a lot of loose ends in the obsolete handbook last reviewed in 2004, which has been in use as a guide to granting approvals to requests for various types of expatriate quota made to the Ministry of Interior.

“I recall that during the presentation of the draft handbook on Business Permit & Expatriate Quota Administration by a 10-man committee set up to review the handbook, I made the case for an expanded stakeholder meeting that will generate a comprehensive handbook in line with international best practices.

“Some of the abuses we have discovered are egregious. We have seen cases of expatriates fraudulently coming in to work as bricklayers, painters and even high-end consorts. Some also circumvent the rules by dubiously acquiring Nigerian citizenship through scam marriages.

“The funny but tragic case of some Asians hawking vegetables went viral. These are clear economic sabotage acts that should be detected, stopped and sanctioned.”

The stakeholders’ meeting is expected to produce a brand new, well-articulated handbook on expatriate quota administration that will have fair and reasonable sanctions that will be effective enough to curb abuses of Business Permit & Expatriate Quota.

Also, it is expected to ensure that the benefits and revenues accruable to the country would now begin to pour in while the teeming unemployed youth in Nigeria would have increased opportunities for employment through the understudy programme stipulated in the expatriate quota guideline.(PANA)

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