‘Unemployment first starts from the mind’ – David Narai
NEWSMAN, Abuja – The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in a report notes that Nigeria’s unemployment rate has risen from 27.1% in the second quarter of 2020, to 33%.
Aside that, a publication by Bloomberg reveals that unemployment in Nigeria, Africa’s largest economy has surged to the second-highest on the global list.
In this interview with The NEWSMAN, 30-year old David Narai, an Abuja-based travel agent, leadership coach, and convener of an annual programme ‘Breaking Unemployment Stronghold’ speaks on his passion and how he aims at solving the problem of unemployment in Nigeria.
In his view, unemployment starts from the mind, and if the average Nigerian youth can have a different mindset towards it, then they are on their way to liberation.
Nigerian youths have been called unemployable, what are your thoughts on that?
To say a good number of Nigerian youths are unemployed is one thing. You can however, not term all of the youths as unemployable.
I believe that we have exceptionally hard working, smart and innovative, industrious youths in Nigeria, but also, we have the segment of youths who justify such a notion or being termed as unemployable by their thoughts, actions and practices.
For you to be employed, you need to be employable, for you to be employable, it means you have the adequate skills and knowledge to produce results commensurate to why you were employed in the first place and most youths don’t have those skills so yes many of the youths are unemployable and until we realize and begin to make deliberate efforts to change the narrative, we can only continue in the debate for God knows how long.
How can youths overcome unemployment despite the unfavourable conditions in the country?
It all starts with the mind. Overcoming unemployment whether in a favorable or unfavorable condition is a mind thing. You can be in a favorable environment and be unemployed, you can also be in an unfavorable environment and have a good paying job or create one for yourself. These things have their bases on the mindset of an individual. We as youths should just get back to working on our thought process, our mindset and other things will just fall in place effortlessly.
However, a lot of graduates coming out of the higher institution are way more than the number of job vacancies we have as a nation, and by virtue of heavy governmental taxes and levies placed on NGOs, the country has in a way discouraged small business from starting up and growing well so as to provide employment for others.
When you say unemployment starts from the mind, what do you mean?
“As a man thinks in his heart, so is he”, the Bible says. The sum total of a man’s life is traced to what he feeds his mind with; what we hear, read, the environment we find ourselves in and all have a great influence on how the outcome of our lives will be in the end.
Statistics have shown that the Jewish people are generally successful in their various endeavours. From my little study of the secret to their success, I could see without a doubt that majority of their strategy is a systematic mind development work. An average Jew begins working on the mindset of his/her child from when this child is way below his/her 6th birthday.
So if you find yourself unemployed, trace the origin and you will see that is a straight line to your mind.
What is Breaking Unemployment’s stronghold about?
Drawing from my response on the fact that unemployment starts from the mind, Breaking Unemployment’s Stronghold is a strategic mind engagement geared towards erasing the erroneous mindset youths have when it comes to the issue of unemployment and replacing those wrong mindset with the right principles for employability.
Our goal is to teach people principles that will make them so valuable to the point unemployment becomes impossible.
What motivated you to organize the programme?
Like I said at the beginning of this interview, I am obsessed with productivity and seeing and hearing that youths in Nigeria are unemployed invariably means the youths of my nation aren’t productive. Little wonder crime rate is on the rise, drugs, alcoholism, robbery and banditry have taken its hold around our community and the list is endless. If these youths are gainfully employed, these vices would have been reduced to a very large extent.
Organizing this program is my own on of helping my community, helping the north, and helping Nigeria to alleviate the issue of unemployement.
However, I must commend the young vibrant Nigeria youths who tirelessly work hard to survive and excel legitimately. It takes beyond the average to be productive and much more effort to be productive in Nigeria. That we have youths that look at our society and refuse to sit back and allow life slide through for them is indeed a thing to commend about.
My encouragement to them is that they keep being productive and never back out. The little contributions is what we need to make Nigeria great again. And just so they know, posterity will reward them for their contribution to society.
If you were president of Nigeria, how would you address the high unemployment rate in the country?
If I become the president of Nigeria, i will focus majorly on the mindset of the people of Nigeria. I will start with the curriculum of the educational sector of the country. Starting from the elementary stages of the children’s life, we build from the foundation because a nation can only be as strong as the foundation it stands on.
Nigeria is great because it has great minds. If only these minds can be put to good use, I believe we will go far as a country. I choose to believe that everyone born on earth, has a purpose, no one is useless.
Would you say your programme has achieved its goal?
As the convener of the program, I have used the principles learnt to become valuable to the point that I can not be unemployed. Also, a number of people that have attended are also making headway and becoming assets in their various spheres.
So I would say, we have made a head start and we are sure achieving our goals.
How can one develop a better mindset towards employment?
I must say that developing a better way of thinking is a huge task. It takes a whole lot to have a good mindset. This can rang from attending helpful seminars, reading good literatures, not just books, but magazines, articles and other relevant materials to listening to educative and mentally boosting things, watching movies that helps in boosting the brain etc.
If our environment and people we associate with are full of wrong mindsets, we shouldn’t expect to have better mindsets either. I am driven by my standard, style, class and taste and I’m also obsessed with productivity, which means I literally detest not being productive.