MARILYN ANONA writes: Self employment can not rule out the fact that unemployment is the biggest problem in Nigeria.

It started with an advertisement for mass recruitment by the Nigeria Immigration Service. Most people were excited and started applying with hope that they will be called for the test and eventually land the job. But something was surprising, I don’t know if any other person felt same way. The Nigeria Immigration Service is supposed to be a Federal body, was there supposed to be a fee attached to the recruitment?
For me, it is totally wrong for applicants to pay fees no matter how little during recruitment exercises especially the ones organized by the Federal Government Agencies. But millions of Nigerian graduates and youths who applied for this job that doesn’t exist, paid one thousand Naira each. Didn’t they say that employment is free? And whose purse did that money enter? Like most Federal Government jobs, millions applied because these days everyone is clamouring for a Government job as it avails you time and offers you security as opposed to what we had in the past and the private sector where you are not sure of staying till you retire. Federal jobs are now hot cakes!!!
I didn’t want to apply because I do not like uniform jobs and I am simply tired of this mess called “MASS RECRUITMENT”. With observation, I have seen that those who apply for those jobs are only wasting their time. The ones who get those jobs, just sit in the comfort of their sitting room and someone comes to deliver their employment letters. Yes! They get employed without writing any aptitude test or having any interview. But then my Dad kept calling me to remind me to apply. I told him it was sheer waste of time but he couldn’t understand and to obey him, I applied. Several months passed and I even forgot I applied for a job. I got a text message inviting me to write the exam in my preferred location. I was so laid back about the whole thing. No zeal, no preparation quite unlike me. Yes! Why should I be enthusiastic about a pseudo job. I learnt from someone who knows very much about this agencies and ministries that recruitment has been going on. He told me in clear terms that the whole thing was just mere propaganda. He said that those who will eventually work with immigration and its like do not go for the so called exams. Can you imagine the sort of country we live in? What a shame! But let me ask a question… Is it professional for who so ever it is that is in charge of recruitment for Nigeria Immigration service (NIS) to invite millions of Nigerian youths for recruitment exams knowing full well that the spaces available are so few.
Some sources said only 58 people will be employed at the end of the exercise. Another source said 5000. But whether its even 10,000 people to be employed… Why should millions waste their time, energy and even money right from the time of application to the time of writing when the chances of getting the job is so so slim. What is the ratio of 5000 spaces to say 1,000,000 people?
So I woke up on Saturday and sincerely I didn’t want to step out. But my Landlady came knocking. I answered her and the next thing she said was “Nne, won’t you go for the immigration exam?” She is an old woman and she would grossly misunderstand me and tag me unserious if I didn’t go. So I prepared and headed straight to the national stadium. The number of cars and people were just too much. As I stood and watched, hot tears welled up in my eyes. I saw hopelessness, I saw first class struggle that will be fruitless at the end of the day. I saw desperation. I saw despair and I wept for Nigeria. I stood there for a while not knowing what to even do. I was terrified and overwhelmed by the crowd. When eventually the lousy exam officers came and opened the gate, it was RUSH OF LIFE! I said to myself, Posh! you can’t do this!!! I stood watching and watching because I had resolved within me that I will enter till when ever the rush subsides even if it means being the last person. But then, see confusion! People collapsing, people screaming, papers flying… My goodness! the stampede was too much. It was terrible that some people even died in the process and some badly wounded were rushed to different hospitals. Too many papers on the ground being stepped on. Probably the originals of people’s certificates. How sad!!! When we were asked to bring our originals to the venue of the exam, I was so surprised. Why should applicants be asked to come with their originals to the stadium? The exam of yesterday was supposed to be the first process, right? After that who ever succeeds can now be screened. What is wrong with these people? So many people lost their certificates yesterday… So many died… So many got injured… All because of employment issues.
This is not the first time I am seeing such enormous number coming out to write exams… I have witnessed in during ICPC exams and afterwards 2 people who never applied for the job not to talk of writing the test got the job. I have witnessed it at NAFDAC and people were given employment letters even before the exams. I have witnessed it in NIMC, we had to travel from Abuja to Minna. But this is the height! The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) exam is the worst so far and goes to tell us that things are getting worse.
Why do we have to suffer so much? Why can’t the Government create jobs for at least 60% of the population. We are all talking about being self employed… Yes that is very good! I believe so much in skill acquisition and self employment. But the truth is, there is no way everyone will be self employed. Sincerely, Nigerian youths are trying and are one of the strongest people in the world. Most are already self employed and I tell you that self employment can not rule out the fact that unemployment is the biggest problem in Nigeria. When there is no job creation, how will wealth be created? Will you just wake up one morning and become self employed? Image
Most youths want to learn skills but the money to learn the skill isn’t available. Some who have those skills can not start up because of lack of finance. What is the way out of this mess called unemployment? It is an accumulated problem. 80% of Nigerian youths are not working. And this has affected our value system greatly. The jobs available are few and only those who have the money can buy them. Sometimes, when you have the money, you may even be unfortunate to fall prey to fraudulent people. Most of the people I know who work with good Government establishments paid through their noses to get those jobs. Should we go on like this? What is the way out?
Be Enlightened! Be Inspired!! Be Motivated!!!   



  1. What was experienced on saturday has never been seen or heard of, it is a shame that we are slowly degenerating into a country where anything goes and the government wouldn’t even dear to show any form of concern for the lives lost by common nigerians. Our value system needs to be looked at and the plight of the youths of this country who are supposed to be future leaders of this country properly addressed so as to save us from untold anarchy to come in the nearest future.. God bless nigeria

      • 1. The youth should always make sure there voices are heard but again like I will always say we the youth are to scared to make that happen
        2. Put a stamp on corruption, corruption should be treated like a plague if we can do this then we are sure of a better and stable country..
        3. The citizens of nigeria should strive to achieve unity in all we do or say…

  2. This Is a disgrace to a country like ours…. When the people at the top would rather prefer to be corrupt than to invest in the future of the youth… We talk about unemployment everyday and nothing has been done about it… This isn’t the first and it wouldn’t be d last time such exam would happen… Unemployment is no longer the issue…. The issue right now is good governance…. China has secured job for their people for the next 100 years…. Meaning their unborn children are already guaranteed job… Can’t we just follow their footsteps and kick against corruption…. Stealing public funds in Chaina attracts a punishment of death… We should embrace such laws in Nigeria rather than focusing on passing unimportant laws.

  3. I posted an update on this same issue this morning of facebook. Its sad that hapless youths are charged a fee by their own government for jobs they don’t stand any chance of getting in the first place. One of the comments on my update resonated with my thoughts:
    “Nigerian youths are hard to pity. Come out and vote; NO, come out and let’s protest; NO, come out and die for useless jobs that you are not sure of getting and they turn out in millions”.
    Back to your post Posh, I think one of the solutions is for the youths to start deciding who leads them. Most of us don’t vote when elections come and then we cry foul when inept people occupy offices that are crucial to our overall development. A people deserve the leadership they get. Having said that, somebody should be brought to book for defrauding Nigerian youths and in the process 19people lost their lives for what I think is a recruitment scam!

    • At Ugochukwu, people have to pay not just someone. Jobs are supposed to be free in the 1st place. Secondly, there should have been proper screening to cut down the huge number. 3rdly, not everyone should have applied in the 1st place. Let’s watch and see what the government has to say. The youths sometimes don’t help matters. When you stand out they tag you all sorts. I met a dumb lady on Saturday and was shocked to my bones when she told me where she works. Very sad! She was openly saying it that she knows what she did to get the job and still doing. I worked in a mediaa company I loved so much. I wass stretched but didn’t complain because I love the job but. Then the boss wanted me to start sleeping with him. I refused and you all already know the consequences. I tried to take it up and the other ladies who always gossip about same thing could not stand with me. The youths don’t help matters too. What is the way out of this mess.

  4. Dear Posh, to say it is a sad situation is an understatement. Like you, I got that text to come for the interview, but with my previous experiences with INEC, ICPC and others, I decided to respect myself and stay home and I’m glad I did. Those who have the mouth shout that the youth should become self employed, great advice if they provided enabling environment for that.
    The way forward is to vote wisely and make sure our votes count for when we let them bamboozle us with petty cash and empty promises.
    Those who are of age to retire should be retired for their children to take over.
    We as youths also need to stand by each other and be our brothers keeper.

  5. Ms.Posh’s great gift is that she has always brought us into the Territory of the previously unexplored,she writes about that which others have kept silence today’s post is no exception. Nigeria is supposed to be in control of Mega companies. Mega companies that have the ability to pull big funds and put it into business and create employment. Dangote cement can get loan from any bank than any self employed individual. If you ask me I say we need a revolution in Nigeria.

  6. Im still vry shocked by d news of dis lovely persons whom left their families in d mornin hopin to get back by evenin. Its vry sad. I was at lagos stadium but on seein millions of nigeria youths dat came for d exam, i got discouraged and i went home. Its a shameful thin dat d govt are doing about d death of these people. Its juz like dis luvly persons bought their death wit 1000 naira. God help us in dis country. May their souls rest in peace.

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