Olusegun Obasanjo, former Nigerian President, has said political will and action are key to tackling the unemployment problems in the country.
He opined that the country’s population can be transformed into an asset.
He stated this while giving a speech on Friday at Oyewusi Ibidapo-Obe symposium in Lagos.
Obasanjo expressed worry over the country’s growing population, especially unemployed youth.
The former President said owing to unemployment and inability to manage the country’s population, many youth have enlisted in violent groups and kidnap gangs.
He stated, “First cluster of questions are: How are we going to feed this growing population? How are we going to house them, educate them — provided we have security and other variants of security?
“The second cluster of questions are: How do we keep this large keg of a large army of unemployed youths from exploding? How do we keep them from enlisting in violent groups and gangs of kidnappers?
“A not-well managed cluster of the population is frightening.
“There appears to be a solution. Political will and political action can make the population an asset. This is the master key. The key has the will and the action. It is not enough to shout political will in mere political rhetoric.”
The former President also said there was an index that countries could use to enhance their populations and make them an asset.
“I’m proud to introduce the population and assets responsiveness index, just as UN, AU and other international agencies have established indices for comparing the performance of countries,” he said.
SaharaReporters, New York