Ex-MAN chairman urges FG to check rapid population growth

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Dr Wale Adegbite, a former Chairman, Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), Ogun Chapter, has advised the Federal Government to formulate  policy to check population growth in the country.

Adegbite, who gave the advice in an interview with newsmen on Tuesday in Ota, said that this was necessary in order to reduce the alarming unemployment rate.

He spoke against the backdrop of a report by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) that the nation’s unemployment rate raised from 23.18 per cent to 33.3 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2020.

Adegbite noted that the population is growing faster than jobs being created.

“The country needs better educated workforce that could start their own business and those who could travel to country like Canada where they need educated workforce so as to reduce the nation’s rising  unemployment rate,’’ he said.

He also called on the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to adopt more flexible forex regime to enable manufacturers import their raw materials at reasonable prices and also generate more employment.

“The inability of manufacturers to source forex to import raw materials has reduced capacity utilisation rate in the manufacturing sector, thus increasing the nation’s unemployment rate,” he said.

Adegbite identified COVID-19 as responsible for the increase in unemployment rate in the fourth quarter of 2020, adding that many businesses downsized during the period.