Five reasons for migration out of Nigeria - LEADERSHIP
OCTOBER 28, 2023
Migration is the movement of people from one place to another to settle in a new location. Migration can be voluntary or involuntary and can occur for a variety of different reasons, including economic, environmental and social issues.
Nowadays, many Nigerians decide to migrate to have a better life. A survey by a consulting firm shows that 52 percent of Nigerian professionals are planning to move abroad to countries like United Kingdom, Italy, Germany, Canada and the United States.
With half of Nigerian elites seeking to migrate, here are some of the motivating reasons:
For Better Economic conditions
An Afrobarometer poll from 2018 found that one in three Nigerians aspire to relocate to other countries, especially the younger and educated ones. They mainly search for employment opportunities within or outside the continent (some of them would like to move to the Middle East and the USA, and others to go to Europe, America, and Asia). The main push factors for Nigerian emigration are the socio-economic conditions in the country, coupled with unemployment rates. 51% of Nigerian migrants have tertiary education. Of the 72,000 doctors registered with the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN), more than half practice outside the country.
Nigeria has 71,753 students studying abroad according to UNESCO. Migrating to study is one of the top reasons Nigerian youths immigrate. They move out to pursue more economically viable higher education which is not adequately addressed in their country. Migration for educational purposes is also due to the failing educational system that is bedeviled with incessant strikes, poor quality curriculum to mention a few. Meanwhile, many Nigerians also see education route as the means to seek further employment opportunities that is lacking in their home country. Often, those who study abroad are more likely to get better employment opportunities when they return or when they choose to stay back in their host countries.
Willingness to work abroad for a long time has been considered elite. A lot of Nigerians migrate to work in other countries to have international, global exposure in their career pursuit. Besides the global exposure, skills that have limited opportunities in Nigeria may be in high demand in other countries. Hence, people migrate based on the demand for their skills in the destination country.
PriceWaterhouseCoopers report disclosed in 2021 that an average of 500 Nigerians travel abroad monthly to seek medical treatment. Depending on the financial situation of the person migrating, it is now a trend for people to migrate to other countries to seek health care services such as birthing, IVF procedures, BBLs to mention a few. Some people also migrate because it is better to manage their health better in their destination countries because of access to health insurance or subsidised medical services. Health care is the fundamental right of every citizen in Nigeria but everyday, that right is becoming exclusive to the rich and less reliable for the middle class. Hence, it is a point of aspiration for middle class and upper class Nigerians to want to have their babies abroad, do their medical procedures in other countries except Nigeria.
People migrate to meet their loved ones. You find a spouse inviting their partner to join the in a new country. Many also migrate to create opportunities for their family members to have the leverage to travel to their host countries as well either as dependents or as visitors.