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Afro Asian Journal of Social Sciences Volume 3, No. 3.4 Quarter IV 2012 ISSN: 2229 – 5313 1TACKLING YOUTH UNEMPLOYMENT IN NIGERIA; THE LAGOS STATE DEVELOPMENT AND EMPOWERMENT PROGRAMMES INITIATIVESEmeh, Ikechukwu Eke Jeffry Department of Public Administration and Local Government, University Of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria ABSTRACT Unemployment in Nigeria looms large and its concomitant consequences are alarmingly daring, especially as youths are the worst hit. A cursory look at the rush into Lagos state by unemployed and unproductively engaged youths depicts the calamitous and outrageousness of the problem, yet the government of Lagos state have continued to strive to contain the contagious effect of youth unemployment by providing youth development and empowerment programmes. This is in response to the clarion call by the federal government of Nigeria to develop and empower the Nigerian youths to enable them contribute to the development of the nation today and take over the leadership of the country tomorrow as they are the future leaders, especially in considering the persistent and consistent uprising of the issue of unemployment. It is in this regard this paper sought to find out how Nigerian government have fared in engaging youth unemployment with youth development and empowerment packages and Lagos state was the study area. The paper employed both primary and secondary sources in generating its data and utilized tables and charts for data presentation and the simple percentage for analysis. And the paper made series of findings among which is that unemployment in Nigeria is real and alarming; that youth development and empowerment can curb youth unemployment and that there is high unemployment in Lagos state owing to the influx of people from every corner of the country in search of greener pasture and that the government of Lagos state reeled out many youth development and empowerment programmes to handle youth unemployment in the state. Keywords: Unemployment, Youth Development, Empowerment Programmes, Government.
Afro Asian Journal of Social Sciences Volume 3, No. 3.4 Quarter IV 2012 ISSN: 2229 – 5313 2INTRODUCTIONThe Nigerian economy since the attainment of political independence in 1960 has undergone fundamental structural changes resulting to structural shifts which have however not resulted in any significant sustainable economic growth and development to ensure adequate employment opportunity for her youths. Recently, available data show that the Nigerian economy grew