Written by By Contributing Writer Hannah Kim, CNN
There were more than 300,000 job losses in the Nigerian agriculture and agriculture-related sectors at the beginning of the implementation of the Employment Act in June 2015, according to official data.
The figures come from an official report from the World Bank’s African Development Bank, which indicates that around 20% of the workforce was laid off due to the initiative.
President Muhammadu Buhari has called for more transparency in the process of implementing the introduction of the Employment Act, which mandated the reconfiguration of the public service by June 2015.
Despite growing pressure from organizations and individuals across the Nigerian workforce, the government appears reluctant to address employment losses and avoid unemployment, Human Rights Watch said in a statement on Thursday.
It added that over two million Nigerian workers lost their jobs between 2007 and 2016.
“The result has been the worst recession in Nigeria’s history,” said Osai Ojigho, Africa director at Human Rights Watch. “The government should never have allowed job losses in the public sector during this period of economic recession. It is shocking that government records now show that the process so devastated the economy in so many ways.”
“With the country in yet another economic recession, it is critical that the government guarantee a living wage for the millions of Nigerians who still work in the agriculture sector.”
The report was made up of interviews with seven Nigerian government agencies, public figures and organizations and evaluated 20,000 answers from surveyors from the World Bank.