Dr. Yaw Ansu
The African Centre for Economic Transformation (ACET) has indicated that the greatest challenge facing Ghana is rising youth unemployment.
Chief Economist at ACET, Dr. Yaw Ansu made this known at a national dialogue on youth employment in Ghana on Wednesday in Accra, calling on the various political parties contesting in the December 7 polls to make youth employment a top priority when elected into power.
The dialogue was held under the theme: ‘National Policy Dialogue On Youth Employment Challenges in Ghana: What do the policy makers and politicians have to say?
It offered the various political parties contesting in the 2016 elections the opportunity to state their positions on how to tackle unemployment among the youth through the modernization of agriculture, skills training and how growth in the economy can translate into increased employment opportunities for the youth.
According to statistics, about 48 percent of youth in the country are unemployed.
Dr. Ansu said the persistent high youth unemployment in Ghana could pose serious security challenges to the country in the near future if it’s not addressed effectively.
When about three-quarters of your people are without jobs, you’re not safe. It’s a time-bomb, he told representatives of the various political parties.
Parties that took part in the dialogue included the New Patriotic Party (NPP), National Democratic Party (NDP), Convention People’s Party (CPP), People’s National Convention (PNC), Progressive People’s Party (PPP).
The ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) was absent.
Dr. Ansu said more than a half of graduates, who come out of the various tertiary institutions annually, are without jobs.
Senior Research Fellow, ACET, Dr. William Baah-Boateng, in a presentation, said that Ghana’s economic growth over the years has not been sufficient for generating jobs for the youth.
He called for the modernization of agriculture, saying there are high job creation potentials in the agriculture subsector but that the sector is less attractive to the youth.
A member of the NPP Communication Team, Richard Asante Yeboah, in a submission said “youth unemployment ought to be dealt with effectively.”
National Chairman of the PPP, Brew Hammond, said many Ghanaian youth are disillusioned about the unemployment situation.
By Melvin Tarlue