I don’t enjoy writing about sad stories such as this piece “why Nigerians are relocating abroad in large numbers” the majority of reasons we are going to analyse here are negative but quite avoidable provided we have had good governance for the past two decades. Without bothering yourself with statistical data on why large numbers of the workforce are relocating from Nigeria, please pay a visit to any passport offices in your area, your will surely notice an upsurge in passport applicants. For the past two years, a large number of Nigerians are struggling to obtain passports, alarmingly, most of them are able-bodied adults. All the measures taken by the Federal government to increase the procurement of the documents are in vain.
1. THE COUNTRY IS IN A STATE OF WAR:
Anywhere you see able-bodied individuals and whole families in many instances hurriedly leaving their comfort zone, selling valuable properties or borrowing monies just to get out and relocate to an unknown destination, and in most cases becoming refugees in a strange land. The reason is obvious, they are surely running from a warlike zone, which could be a remote or feasible war. Unfortunately, in the case of Nigeria situation, it is both feasible and remote. Currently, the daily news or happens in our immediate surroundings or areas are horrible or frightening that any sain mind usually feels like fleeing because the level of kidnappings and killings occurring is unimaginable.
The level of killings, kidnapping and Arm robbery has reached an alarming and frightening proportion that anyone with wherewithal will not hesitate to check out of the country. There’s a limit to a level where any normal human being can endure or live in fear daily. All over the country, people have lost freedom of movement. People are boxed into small enclaves. Unlike in the past when we used to travel between the West and the North with pleasure and stop over at random along the way. Nobody can do that now without armed escorts. Nowadays, travelling between Oyo, Ilorin, Jebba and Makwa through Kotongora and Kaduna South is nothing but a suicide mission.
3. NO STABLE ELECTRICITY
At the time of writing this piece, in my area, there is no stable electricity. For the past four weeks, we are in total darkness. The system has collapsed. Here we don’t believe there is an elected Governor. He behaves as if he was forced to govern. You cannot store any food in your refrigerator, or work with electricity. The only alternative is Chinese generators, in which you have to rely on petrol to power it, not mind the noise and smoke or fumes emanating from the generator. To add insult to injury the fuel is becoming scarce and expensive due to the increase in demand. In summarizing, there is no solution in sight regards the provision or improve electricity, therefore, those who cannot bear it anymore are relocating abroad.
4. NO WATER
In many areas of the country, clean water is non-existent. Most people rely on boreholes or well for their daily needs water. And for drinking water, you have to buy sachets or bottled water, the majority of which are poorly produced. They are largely health hazards.
5. ECONOMIC MIGRATION
The level of unemployment or people who are underemployed is very high. When parents used their savings to train a child up to the university level, the reasonable thing is for the child to get a job and take care of them, however, the current situation in Nigeria is so bad that the child after graduation becomes a liability to the parents because there is no job. I was told of a man that took a bank loan when two of his children got admitted into a private university in Nigeria. Four years later, they graduated and proceeded to complete a year of compulsory national service. Two years afterwards, they’re unemployed and still dependent on their father, the man may be regretting taking a loan to train them. Unemployment is the key issue why Nigerians are relocating abroad in large numbers.
The standard of education in Nigeria is good when compared with most overseas countries because Nigerians are competing favourably with graduates all over the world. However due to an unending or incessant strike by the public university teachers in the country, university students are spending between 8 to 10 years before graduation thereby encouraging abnormal behaviour from the students, no parents want their wards to spend their useful years unproductively. Hence, it’s better to relocate abroad and provide uninterrupted education for them.
The level of inflation in the country is going out of proportion, realistically, between June 2021 and May 2022 prices of goods and services are more than double without a corresponding increase in income. The majority of citizens cannot survive in such a country without cutting corners, therefore the reasonable alternative is to relocate abroad.
8. NIGERIA CURRENCY
The Nigeria currency, the Naira, is becoming very unstable and achieving a free fall in recent time that make savings or buying properties in Naira very unreasonable. Around September 2021 the unofficial rate of the Nigerian currency was 460 to one United States dollar, however, as of May 2022, the realistic rate of the Nigerian currency which is popularly called the blackmarket is 607 Naira to one United States dollar. The fact of the case is that the free fall of the Naira encourages working or relocating abroad, even when the person is going to receive low wages.
9. SHORTAGES OF WORKFORCE IN MOST ADVANCED ECONOMY
The unexpected crisis of the coronavirus pandemic COVID-19 introduced new dimensions to mass migration. Most Western countries in Europe and North America are experiencing acute shortages of workforce occasions to the COVID-19 imbroglio most advanced economies are expanding their industrial and social services, introducing new drugs and creating facilities uncommon in the past, thereby making the need to recruit more competent staff imperative. Because they cannot be met locally, countries are currently enticing skilled workers from Nigeria and other African countries. Because the remunerations are enticing and sometimes mouthwatering, a Nigerian professional will not mind relocating with his entire family without hesitation.
THE BOTTOM LINE
Advanced and industrialised countries such as the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Ireland, Switzerland, Finland, Luxembourg, France the Netherlands Norway, and Sweden are currently in need of skilled workers in various sectors especially health care, Medicine, pharmacy, software engineering/developer, Truck Driving, Digital Technology etcetera. If you know how to connect or search for jobs, this is the right time to secure a good job in those aforementioned countries with minimal effort.
Remember, leaving your comfort zone may not be easy or things people undertake for pleasure, but necessities can make a man relocate far away from his comfort zone but it is temporary, I’m positive that things are surely going to be better in your country one day. The change will surely come and immigrants will surely migrate back to or their place of origin with pleasure.
That’s my take for now on reasons why Nigerians are relocating abroad in large numbers.