Unemployment is a major challenge in Aba North, Nigeria. Unemployment exists among professionals and non professionals alike, among young school graduates, experienced professionals, tradesmen, and non-skilled workers. The consequences of unemployment are grave and may lead to increase in crime rates, loss of potential output, poverty, and loss of potential government revenue, professional studentship and family instability (Alam et al., 2009).
The term unemployment denotes a condition of joblessness or lack of employment. In other words, anyone who is fit and available to work but fails to get one may be considered as being unemployed for the concerned period (Olubukola, 2013). (Arosanyin et al., 2011) reported that Unemployment and poverty are two of the challenges facing the Nigerian economy. Most urban, semi and unskilled labour have found solace in the informal sector. Ishola (2008) also noted that, in 2003, Nigerian’s unemployment rate declined substantially to 2.3 percent. This decline was attributed to the various government efforts aimed at addressing the problem through poverty alleviation programmes. He further noted that the decline also pointed to an increased number of people who engaged in the informal sector activities.
Unemployment in the Eastern part of Nigeria has greatly affected households negatively by leading to family disintegration, the rising trends of female headed households and early and premature death (Tibi and Atoma 2015)
One major source of unemployment reduction in Nigeria is the formation of cooperative societies. Abia (2009) stressed that rural cooperatives played an important role in mobilizing and distributing credit to the member. He further stressed that cooperative provide members with a wide range of services such as credit, health, recreational and housing facilities. Cooperatives societies are also useful in the dissemination of information about modern practice in agriculture and other fields. Cooperative society as a micro finance agency is a direct source of employment for members and those engaged in its management. It has been established that about 70 percent of Nigeria population is engaged in Agriculture (Nweze, 2002) while 90 percent of Nigeria total food production comes from small farms and 60 percent of the country population earn their living from these small farms (Tombola, 2009).
Furthermore, (Birchall, 2004) reported that people come together in cooperative societies to pool their resources together so as to meet individual needs that could not be resolved by individual limited financial capacity. Its provide services that benefit both members and the local community. It was also observed that it is an essential tool for development of less economically developed communities (Ibrahim, 2004).
This chapter deals with review of some related literature on the Role of cooperative societies in reducing unemployment However, this chapter will be discuss under the following sub-headings below:
Types of Unemployment
Causes of Unemployment
Effect of Unemployment
Effect of High Rate of Unemployment
Government Effort in Reducing Unemployment in Nigeria
Meaning of Cooperative
Concept of Cooperative
The International Labour Organization (ILO) defines the unemployed as members of the economically active population who are without work but available for and seeking work, including people who have lost their jobs or who have voluntarily left work (IBRD, 2009). Morio and Zoctizoum (1980) define unemployment as works available for employment whose contract of employment has terminated or been temporarily suspended and who are without a job and seeking paid employment; persons never previously employed whose most recent status was other than that of employee, together with persons who had been in retirement, who were available for work during the specified period and were seeking paid employment; persons without a job and currently available for work who have made arrangements to start a new job at a date subsequent to the specified period; and persons temporarily or indefinitely laid off without pay. The expression of these definitions is that persons who are without paid jobs to earn decent living are unemployed. In Nigeria’s unemployment scenario, the young school leavers of all categories are the worst hit. This cream of jobless youths belongs to the major workforce of the economy but being wasted as they seek for job endlessly without success.
Also Fajana ( 2000), and Standing ( 1983) opined that unemployment can be describe as the state of worklessness experienced by persons who are members of the labour force who perceived themselves and are perceived by others as capable of work. Gbosi (1997) defined unemployment as a situation in which people who are willing to work at the prevailing wage rate are unable to find jobs. In recent times, the definition of unemployment by the International Labour Organization states that “the unemployed is a member of the economically active population, who are without work but available for and seeking for work, including people who have lost their jobs and those who have voluntarily left work (World Bank, 1990). The application of this definition across countries has been faulted, especially for the purpose of comparison and policy formulation, as countries characteristics are not the same in their commitment to resolving unemployment problems, more so, the preponderance of housewives who possess the ability and willingness to work, the definition of the age bracket all stand as limitations to the definition by ILO (Douglason et al., 2006).
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