As Uganda today joined the rest of the World today to commemorate International Youth Day, we are likely to hear a lot about youth unemployment.
That’s because, like many African countries, Youth unemployment remains a serious policy challenge for Uganda.
Uganda has one of the youngest populations in the world, with 77% of Uganda’s population being under 30 years of age.
And 2012 statistics from the Uganda Bureau of Statistics reveal that the share of unemployed youth, among the total unemployed persons in the country, was 64 per cent.
Urban youth are 12 percent more to be unemployed, than rural youth at 3 percent.
In addition, female youth are twice as likely to be unemployed compared to male youth.
Interestingly, unemployment increases with the level of education attained.
Unemployment is lower among persons with no education and primary education, and higher among those with secondary education and above.
The Director of Operations at Centre for management and communications Africa, Dorcus Magoba, says uneducated people are more employed, because they are more willing to take risks in starting businesses.
She observes that educated people are risk-averse, and fear to venture into the unknown.
According to Magoba, educated people also do not invest in their skills, unlike the uneducated who take time to hone their skills, or at the workplace.
Daniel Kagundu a marketing specialist at Uganda Breweries says graduates have high salary expectations, hence reluctant to take up certain jobs that do not match their expectations.
International Youth Day is observed annually on 12th August.
It is meant as an opportunity for governments and others to draw attention to youth issues worldwide.
President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni urged the youth in the country to wake up and contribute to the development of Uganda so that they are able to come out of poverty and joblessness.
“I want the youth to wake up so that we develop our country in order to come out of poverty and joblessness,” he said.