The unemployment rate in Edo State dropped from 25.1 per cent in the 3rd quarter of 2018 to 19 per cent in the 2nd Quarter of 2020, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has said.
According to the “Labour Force Statistics: Unemployment and Underemployment Report,” released by the NBS last Friday, Edo State has the lowest unemployment figure in the South-South region.
Specifically, the report said: “The unemployment rate among states in the South-south is as follows: Akwa-Ibom 45.2 per cent; Bayelsa 27.8 per cent; Cross River 31.6 per cent; Delta 40.3 per cent, Rivers State 43.7 per cent and Edo 19 per cent.”
It further stated that of the 1,985,765 labour force in Edo State, “916,871 people are fully employed and work for over 40 hours; 692,160 work for 20 to 39 hours; 143,026 work for 1-19 hours; 233,228 work for zero hours and 376,994 are unemployed.”
Analysts attribute the 6.1 per cent drop in Edo State’s unemployment rate to the job creation drive of the Governor Godwin Obaseki-led administration, whose job creation agency, Edo State Skills Development Agency, also known as EdoJobs, is credited with creating over 200,000 jobs through innovative programmes in the last three and half years.
Data from the Agency showed that in 2017, 22,828 direct jobs were created, while 2018 witnessed the creation of 49,670 jobs and 2019 (46,576). Within the period under review, 32,430 indirect jobs were created.
According to the NBS report, Imo State reported the highest rate of unemployment with 48.7 per cent, followed by Akwa-Ibom State and Rivers State with 45.2 per cent and 43.7 per cent respectively.
It said Anambra recorded the lowest rate of unemployment at 13.1 per cent.
Special Adviser to the Edo State Governor on Media and Communication Strategy, Crusoe Osagie, said the new figures validate the data provided by EdoJobs, which had been vetted by several independent research outfits.
He noted that the Governor Godwin Obaseki-led administration was data-driven, which informs its policy thrusts and influences the outcomes of its reforms across different sectors of the state.
He said: “We are very elated by the latest data from the NBS as it validates the records published by EdoJobs. We are very modest about our achievements and let the data and impact do the talking. We undertook a holistic approach in resetting the economy, which is now evident for all to see. We are not resting on our oars.”