A study published by Child Rights International (CRI) found that about 55% of children in Ghana believe that the future is bleak and are planning to leave the country by 2040, citing jobs, education and better standards of living elsewhere as the reasons.
The survey focused on expectations of some 11,288 children between the ages of 12 and 17 in all the 16 regions of Ghana.
About 48% of the sampled population represented females while 52% represented males.
According to the report, 94% of the children stated that they were worried about getting a job in the next two decades.
A report authored in 2010 shows that 56% of the doctors who are trained in Ghana and 24% of the nurses trained in Ghana were now working abroad.
Similarly, the report shows that 60% of faculty positions in polytechnics, for instance, and 40% of positions in university remain vacant because there simply are not enough qualified people to take up those positions.
At the time, it was estimated that the number of Ghanaians living abroad ranges between one-and-a-half and three million.
In 2018, Pew Research Center in a survey found that about 75% of Ghanaians are likely to leave for abroad immediately should they be given the opportunity.
It also found that 42% of Ghanaians plan on moving to another country in the next five years.
Poor working conditions, lack of jobs and the lack of opportunities for career advancement are pushing qualified Ghanaians to seek greener pastures abroad.
Many educated Ghanaians who are unable to find suitable employment at home are going abroad in search of work.
Increasing numbers of qualified, educated young Ghanaians are migrating to foreign countries.
Youth unemployment and joblessness together constitute a major socio-economic and political problem in Ghana.
The high and increasing incidence of street hawking and the migration of Ghanaian youths are symptoms of labour market challenges and also reflect a sense of hopelessness.
An intriguing aspect of Ghana’s youth unemployment patterns is that youth unemployment appears higher among the educated than the less educated.
Ghana has the highest youth unemployment rates in the world, with 30% unemployed youth in its capital city.
Research also indicated that 23% of the youth in five major cities in Ghana were unemployed.
In 2016, a World Bank report on jobs in Ghana revealed that about 48% of the youth in the country who are between 15 and 24 years do not have jobs.
It is clear that the views expressed by the children in the CRI survey is reflective of the actual situation on the ground.
Important sectors of the economy might not have the appropriate personnel to handle it.
There are certain specialised professions that take a long time for people to be trained in.
These include medical doctors, nurses, architects and many types of engineers. When such people leave the country in droves, the economy suffers.
Trained and qualified personnel of a country are its most important resource.
Where people with the necessary developmental skills leave the country in thousands, there can be no proper development or socio-economic growth for the nation.
Credit: Child Rights International