September 24, 2023

NBS, former statistician-general differ on 4.1% unemployment rate

NBS, former statistician-general differ on 4.1% unemployment rate

The National Bureau of Statistics and former statistician-general Dr Yemi Kale clashed over the recently released 4.1 per cent unemployment rate.

DAILY POST recalls that the NBS on Thursday last week said the unemployment rate for the first quarter of 2023 stood at 4.1 per cent with the revised methodology.

Reacting to the figure in an interview on Arise Television on Monday, Kale faulted the methodology used by the NBS to generate the latest unemployment data.

He stated that the income generated from 20 hours of work in Nigeria would equate to that made from working one hour in the US.

Kale noted that the importance of data is to give policymakers tools to solve problems.

“The 20 hours(old methodology) was decided on because it was agreed that if you work for that duration, you might be able to generate enough income that equates to what working one hour in the US is. Then you have a bit more comparison.

“But policymakers can’t use it, and I must repeat that the most important use of data is to provide information for policy, not for international comparison. International comparison is good,” he said.

But, in a statement responding to Kale, the Head of the Communications and Public Relations Department of the National Bureau of Statistics, Wakili Ibrahim, said the new methodology aligned with international standards.

“The new methodology is internationally accepted. All our neighbouring countries in Africa are using the new methodology of one hour”, he said.

In the 2020 second quarter, NBS unemployment in Nigeria was 33.3 per cent.

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