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Corruption is leaving graduates jobless
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Corruption is leaving graduates jobless

Many young graduates in Cameroon are unemployed – partly because of corruption, writes 22 years old Promise Forsuh, a Correspondent from  Bamenda in the Northwest Region of Cameroon who argues that corruption has taken root in all sectors of her society.

There are so many young graduates who still roam the streets jobless, not because there are no jobs but because of the different conditions attached to getting the jobs. Buswig Ariel, a 25 year old female graduate from the University of Buea is one of the  many unemployed youths affected by the conditions attached to getting a job in Cameroon.

“I was asked for compensation in exchange for a job worth 40,000 FCFA (USD$69.00). My employer asked me to compensate him with sex often every month before I am given the opportunity,” explained Buswig Ariel  who resides in Buea. According to her, the location for the job  is in Tiko which meant she would have had to spend a lot of money for transportation.

“Imagine if I accept the job and I spend a 1000FCFA (USD $1.70) daily for transportation and coupled with the compensation I will be giving my employer, what benefits will I have at the end of the day if I receive 40,000FCFA (USD$69.00) at the end of each month?” explained Beryl.

Young people, especially females are affected by corruption, as they are sexually harassed by prospective employers when they go job hunting. Buswig Ariel is not the only female who has experienced this, as Clothilde Manka explained “I was asked to sexually compensate my employer and even come stay with him, cook for him and do his laundry before I am given a job in his company.”

According to Transparency International, Cameroon is rated at 153 out of 175 on its 2017 Corruption Perception Index, and with many young people having  experiences like the ones Buswig and Clothilde have had, this low rating is understandable. This is not however the only context in which young graduates experience corruption. It is entrenched in almost every domain in the country, and has made life difficult for many people.

Belther Fri explained that when a mobile provider had just stated their mobile money services,” I got interested and I was registered. In my village, we had only one mobile money point and we had to pay extra money for the services she rendered. I remember a clear example when I wanted to withdraw 5000FCFA (USD $8.60)and she told me it cost 500FCFA  (US 86 cents) when it was normally 150 FCFA ( US 26 cents)”

Another young woman added: “I visited a renowned travelling agency in Bamenda and when I was about to pay for my seat, the girl in charge received a call and I overhead someone asking her to reserve 5 seats. Though she started attending to me before the call, she asked me to go away because there were no more available seats,” said Neba Princewill.

Young graduates, many of whom are prevented from pursuing their career goals because of the threat of exploitation and corruption, are either roaming the streets jobless or have engaged themselves as motor bike riders and petit traders.

“I have a first degree in Accountancy, but due to the nature of the country, it’s hard to find a job. I run a motor bike on a daily basis to feed my family,” 26 years old Forbishi Allain explained.

“I left the University of Buea two years ago, since then I haven’t been able to get a job with my degree. I sell food stuffs at the Bamenda Food market with my mother. I would really love to go in for my Masters but I cannot raise the money without getting a job,” Binue Ashwente said.

It is often said that the youths are the leaders of tomorrow, but the question these youths keep asking is how can they lead when they are continuously neglected, face corruption and remain jobless.

Photo Credit: The Commonwealth’s Asset Bank

About me: I am a graduate with a first degree in Journalism and Mass communication fromNational Polytechnic University Institute Bamenda.
My ambition goals are geared towards being a celebrity journalist or a great Public and International Relation’s Practitioner.
I am interested in writing for both print and broadcast not only journalistic writing but fiction as well. Presently, I work as a volunteer for SOPECAM as a journalist in my country.

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Opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the Commonwealth Youth Programme. Articles are published in a spirit of dialogue, respect and understanding. If you disagree, why not submit a response?
To learn more about becoming a Commonwealth Correspondent please visit: http://www.yourcommonwealth.org/submit-articles/

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