Why Nigerian Youth Are Migrating To Other Countries — Gbajabiamila

The speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, says the investment in infrastructure by the government has failed to rekindle the faith of Nigerian youth in the country.

He explained that the lack of faith in the country is fueling the migration of youth, who see it as the only means of achieving their aspirations.

Mr Gbajabiamila said this in his speech on Wednesday during the valedictory session of the 9th Assembly.

“Despite the considerable investments we have made to improve our public infrastructure and the numerous reforms we have enacted to change how we administer the government, our country faces many significant challenges.

“These challenges have caused many of our fellow citizens to wonder if the promise of democracy will ever become real in their lives. Too many of our young people have lost faith entirely and are choosing in droves to seek their fortunes and their futures in other lands.

“We are losing some of our best and brightest, and if we don’t act now, the consequences of this loss will shortly become painfully evident,” he said.

Nigeria has been grappling with the exodus of many of its youth. Some are leaving the country as professionals, while others are exiting the country through the academic route, a situation that is popularly referred to as “Japa”.

According to a report by Africa Polling, 73 per cent of Nigerians have expressed willingness to migrate with their families to other countries.

Early this year, the House considered a bill seeking to stop the migration of medical personnel trained by the country. The bill was met with public outcry.

Speaking on the mass migration, Mr Gbajabiamila, who is to resume as the Chief of Staff President Bola Tinubu on 14 June, said the government must address the country’s general insecurity and restore the faith of Nigerian youth in the country.

“How do we restore faith in our young people so that so many of them no longer feel like the only way to achieve their best aspirations is to chase their fortunes in far away, often hostile lands?

“With each new day, we have an opportunity to make the hard choices and take the necessary actions to guarantee our nation’s future,” Mr Gbajabiamila said.

In his contribution, Julius Ihonvbere (APC, Edo) said Mr Gbajabiamila should use his new position as COS to address the “broken dreams” he talked about.

He urged the speaker to prioritise primary education, which he described as “broken”.

“Mr Speaker, in your new role, your challenges will be more than what you faced here because those pains, those broken dreams that you spoke about, are still there. In many cases, they are the worst.

“So we plead with you not to abandon the spirit of vision, commitment, of believing that a country requires the kind of leaders that will have that ability to have a sense of nation and vision.

“Let me end by pleading with you, sir, as you go up to the Villa, basic, education—through you, I have the opportunity to chair that Committee, is still a big trouble in Nigeria. Education is still broken,” he stated.

The former speakers of the House, Ghali Na’Abba and Patricia Etteh, attended the valedictory session.