87% of Ugandan graduates idle

Daily monitor reports in the newspaper of 10th January 2021 that 87% of all graduates in Uganda are jobless, about nine in every ten Ugandans who have completed any form of education are unemployed according to National Planning Authority (NPA). Worse still these levels of unemployment have been on rise up to date.

Unemployment refers to a situation where a person is jobless but ready and available to work and the jobs are nowhere to be found, more so the paid employment to enable a person earn a living, and I think this could be the main reason as to why students study to get qualifications to secure jobs in the near future but this is so much scaring that many graduates in Uganda are still unemployed and those who are employed are underpaid making them to continually depend on their parents for survival which shows no progress in financial development of families and a country at large.    

A graduate is a person who is qualified with a certificate of either a degree or a diploma and any other level of education in any field of professionalism and these are mostly the youths of 23years and above.

Unemployment has been fetched by a number of factors among the graduates and these could be, the high levels of competition in the labor force where the graduates are many and the available jobs cannot be enough for them, you find one job having 50 applicants and 49 are left unemployed, the little experience of working, since most of these graduates are fresh in the field they are limited to most of the jobs since most of them need the working experience of at least two years and above hence leaving most of them unemployed. The poor education systems of Uganda has also increased unemployment among the graduates, it is so much challenging that a student who has spent almost 16 years in the education system is seen not qualified enough to assume any office and also a student moves out of campus without enough skills to work in his or her field of interest which has left many graduates unemployed , the few connections that graduates have to enable them access the jobs since they are new in the field and in our Uganda today if you do not have any relative or friend who knows you to connect you to any office it becomes difficult to get a job and this is where corruption comes in leaving the qualified unemployed.

 So this has affected the people more so the youths and the country at large where most of the graduates have become hopeless, they are living a hopeless life because they do not know what next in life leaving most of them psychologically ill, depressed and stressed which has resulted into mental illnesses due to the deep thoughts and criticisms by the guardians and this is where we have found many graduates committing suicide because they seem not able to handle the situations around them.

Unemployment has led to high rates of crimes in Uganda more so theft, since these graduates are idle “an idle mind is the devil’s workshop” many of them are enticed to robe and steal people for survival and that is why theft is high in most areas of slum in Uganda where these graduates get cheap houses to rent for example Makerere kikoni, kikumi kikumi, kivulu and many others.

Unemployment has increased over dependence by the graduates to the guardians, since the graduates are jobless still the parents have to support them financially as they cannot survive on their own and this affects the families financially because one person who is working is having like ten people behind his or her back waiting for support hence a decline financially since there is no investments and savings made for survival in the future.

Unemployment has made the youths vulnerable and poor, the lives of the graduates have worsened and most of them are now back to their home villages to look for ways of surviving and most of them are vulnerable financially that they cannot even provide for themselves the basic needs to live a fair life.

Unwanted marriages have become solutions to most of the girls who are jobless, you might find out that a girl is married to a rich person not because they love them but it is the only way for them to survive and in most cases you find them mistreated in marriages where they thought could be the source of joy and peace.

The increased drug abuse and gambling, unemployment has also increased drug misuse among the graduates who use them in a way of trying to relieve from the stress and thoughts and this has left many educated people drunkards and others take weeds like marijuana becoming useless to their communities who expected help from them and others are engaged in illegal activities like gambling since they lack what to do.

Unemployment has led to permissiveness in the society, since people are desperately looking for jobs they end up in prostitution and homosexuality because they need money for survival, today young ladies are prostitutes not because they want but because of the financial factors and others are sexually relating with people of the same sex because they are being promised large sums of money which has left Uganda as a country in an a shameful situation and not promising at all.

Reduction on the government revenue that is collected or taxed on workers ,when the number of the people who are working is low the taxes earned by the government reduces since it has few people to tax hence slowing down the development of the country to support the public services that help the everyday people.

Unemployment also lowers the standards of living of people, since a graduate is not earning the chances are high if not helped by other people that he or she will not receive the personal services like medication, they end up staying in the rooms of poor conditions and lack the basic needs like clothes and food.

But as well some measures can be taken to end or reduce the rates of unemployment among the graduates in Uganda, Graduates should not only look at their qualifications as the only source of employment, they can as well get the ideas of starting up their own income generating activities that could help them earn a living for them to survive, to those that could be having capital can adopt that idea than them waiting to be employed rather they be self-employed.

Educational institutions should incorporate entrepreneurship into curriculum in every course and also work with employers to make sure they train the graduates the appropriate skills instead of demanding for the experience which they do not have at the moment and also ensuring the school on job training programs to support the fresh graduates in the field such that by the time they leave school they are capable of doing something.

The government should also boost job creation and labor demand to enable the graduates find the jobs on the market by taking entrepreneurship out of classroom setting to the practical part.

Focusing on the innovation and creativity of coming up with the new employment ideas that matches with the graduate’s professionalism for them to be employed.

By Nakato


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