A former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, has advised governments at all levels to create the enabling environment that would attract and sustain investments that would create jobs for the army of unemployed in Nigeria. A statement by Atiku Media Organisation on Sunday in Abuja reported Mr. Abubakar as making the recommendation to mark the United Nations International Migrants Day holding on Monday.
He said that creation of jobs and opportunities with inclusive government that did not engender crisis would help to stem the ill-fated migration of Nigerians. Thousands of Nigerians seeking greener pastures are stranded in Libya despite over 3,000 being flown back home.
Mr. Abubakar said that the major driver of migration, which at times were ill fated like in the case of Libya, was the search of a better life and opportunity.
He said that the current situation in the country where three million jobs, according to the National Bureau of Statistics, had been lost annually in the last two years, had rendered millions jobless. He added that no prospects of opportunities were compelled to take the suicidal flight.
“The chances of a young person with a job and opportunity at home taking a suicidal flight in search of a better life will become an exception and not the rule”, he said. He also attributed the cause of migration to poverty and insecurity in the original countries of the migrants.
Mr. Abubakar noted that it was imperative for governments in Africa, Nigeria inclusive, to govern in such a way as to create an environment conducive for economic progress and employment generation. He added that a fair and inclusive government would spread available opportunities to all citizens.
This, according to him, will also encourage those with entrepreneurial inclination to start businesses and factories to absorb the teeming population of the unemployed, thus making unbridled migration unnecessary.
The former Vice President stated that citizens did not choose to be migrants but unpleasant social, economic and political conditions in many countries forced them into migrants, seeking new homes, security, employment and a better future.
He opined that all hands needed to be on deck to deal squarely, and in a humane manner, with the challenges thrown up by the reality of migration in the contemporary World.
He said that one of the worst forms of maltreatment, which a migrant could experience, was the large scale enslavement of young and helpless Nigerian and African migrants in Libya which recently drew global attention. “To prevent the recurrence of unbridled migration as we have today among Nigerian youths, the authorities at federal and state levels should endeavour to discourage potential migrants.
“This should be done through public enlightenment and information about the down sides of poorly conceived overseas travels.”He urged the international community to ensure that the international code of treatment of migrants was strictly adhered to.