Lagos mulls policies, initiatives to address rising unemployment
Lagos State Government has pledged its commitment to reduce high level of unemployment in the State, noting that deliberate employment intervention policies of the State have been impacting positively on job creation.
Governor, Babajide Sanwo Olu, added that tackling the scourge of underemployment and unemployment particularly among the nation’s teeming young population is vital to ensuring economic growth and development.
The Governor, who was represented by his Special Adviser on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Solape Hammond, at the launch of Eko Job Centre initiative in Lagos, said: “We are going to go on a business-friendly expansion of the economy where we are waking up Lagos to its potential. We are not only talking of potentials, but actualising it and people are very central to achieving this.”
Meanwhile, he said according to the recent labour force report by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), reveals a 6.7 per cent drop in unemployment rate stemming from 740,146 new jobs created, which he said is the largest recorded by any state in Nigeria, in third quarter 2018.
“This means we are on track and we can certainly do so much more. Partnering Eko Job Centre can provide us an even greater opportunity to increase our impact and working with them through our five job centres in Lagos. This would enable us to improve the service we provide to the intending workers, support the training we also provide and extend our reach to many more employers. This is indeed a great example of what could happen when the public sector, private sector and civil society come together to resolve our societal challenges,” he added.
A member of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Ikeja Constituency 1, Folajimi Mohammed, said the Eko Job Centre is a private limited company that has received a concession from the Lagos State Ministry of empowerment and wealth creation to provide job centres that would tackle the issue of unemployment within the State.
He said plans are underway to put a bill into law to encourage inhabitants and employers of labour with the State to provide a certain quota of employment to its jobs Board within the ministry of employment and wealth creation to address unemployment in the State.
“If the legislation is going to come up, we are still going to have a stakeholders meeting. We have to feel the pulse of the people, we have to know what they think and get them sync and of course, we know that employment is rising and in Lagos more particularly,” he added.
The Managing Director, Eko Job Centre, Lucia Cobbina, said the centre is a private public partnership recruitment and employment initiative in conjunction with the Lagos State Government designed to provide full range of assistance to job seekers and employers.
She said the mission of the centre is to increase productivity in the State by maintaining an efficient database of the workforce; be a centre of hope amongst job seekers and provide access to information and advisory services.