Advancing Human Security Since 2001

The Foundation for Security and Development in Africa (FOSDA) is alarmed by the
unemployment rates released by the Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) under the Labour
Statistics Report. According to the government statistician Professor Samuel Kobina Annim,
25% of young people age 15?35 were not in employment, education, or training (NEET) across
the three quarters of 2022. This amounts to 2.5 million people, or 1 out of every 4 young
The report also indicated that about 1.76 million people were unemployed in the third quarter
of 2022, and two out of every three unemployed people were female. Prior to this, data on
Ghana?s youth unemployment fluctuated from 6% to 13% between 2016 and 2021.
This is a worrying development considering the demographic dividends Ghana could benefit
from the youthful nature of its population. The report clearly shows that the numerous
government youth employment interventions and initiatives such as NABCO, YouStart, and
YEA, among many others, have failed to sustainably address the youth unemployment
situation in the country. For instance, by July 2022, the government of Ghana?s expenditure
on NABCO was GH2.2 billion. Additionally, expenditure on YouStart during the pilot phase was
GH 1.98 million out of the planned GH 10 billion. In spite of all these expenditures,
unemployment keeps rising.
The high rate of NEET among the youth in Ghana is a staggering call to adopt an alternative
and sustainable approach to addressing the problem of youth unemployment. It is a wellknown fact that the growing number of idle young people poses a serious security challenge.
Recent UNDP research on the drivers of violent extremism has confirmed youth
unemployment as a key driver of extremism and terrorism. The worse the situation gets, the
more vulnerable Ghana becomes.
It is crucial at the moment to take urgent short-term measures with long-term effects,
including efficient and inclusive implementation of existing youth employment interventions.
FOSDA is calling on the National Youth Employment Strategy to address the menace of youth
unemployment on a long-term and comprehensive basis. We also urge the government to
scale up reforms in the Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) section focusing
on transition from school to job approaches as both short- and long-term measures to tackle
youth employment.
FOSDA also urges the government to consider more investment in agribusiness,
entrepreneurship, apprenticeship, construction, tourism, and sports as key sectors that can
offer increased employment opportunities for Ghanaian youth both in the short and long
We also call for more investments in career guidance and counseling, work-based learning,
coaching, and mentoring to equip young people with the skills needed for work.
Theodora W. Anti
Executive Director,
Contact No. 0205336268

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