You are currently viewing Japa Season: Why Are Nigerians Leaving The Country?

Japa Season: Why Are Nigerians Leaving The Country?

If you don’t know people are leaving the country, then, you probably live in Ikorodu. From the social media buzz, the “Japa Parties,” to the sudden disappearance of that gentleman you watch football with or the lady you often meet at the hairdresser’s shop. You don’t need a visit to the immigration services of the country to know it’s ”Japa Season.” 

Why Nigerians (including those with “well-paying jobs”) can’t pass on an opportunity to flee the country despite the abundance of resources and potential we have here begs for answers. 

Japa Season and Nigerians leaving the country

Why are Nigerians Leaving the Country?

It is human nature to always want to remain in one’s comfort zone. Even when people must move, they do so to source for means of making their comfort zone more comfortable. The use of ‘leaving’ to describe the situation of Nigeria becomes imperative because most Nigerians in recent years migrate without plans to return in any foreseeable future. 

No country is free from citizens’ emigration, but, it becomes a problem when there is an excessive surge in the trend. The reason for people ‘japaing’ can be looked at from a few angles, such as: 

Crippling Educational System 

The incessant strikes by ASUU and other unions of the Nigerian university have crippled the system which is due to the poor funding and attention given to the educational sector. This has led to the migration of students to seek a faster and better alternative in other countries.

Also, the condition of the learning environments is mostly unconducive for students and their tutors. Plus, the unnecessary difficulties students face in their education journey have become unbearable for most. These and other reasons have prompted many students and lecturers to leave the country. Can you blame them? 

Rising Unemployment Rate  

In recent years, the unemployment rate in Nigeria has significantly increased and is expected to hit 37% soon. The available jobs are not enough to cater to the employment need of Nigerians. This has made the criteria for getting jobs hard for many to satisfy. Worthy of note is the problem of nepotism that has taken the place of qualifications as well. 


Nigerians continue to live in fear of various security threats such as terrorism, inter-tribal wars, kidnapping, banditry, etc. Leaving home every day with the fear of possibly not returning home has become a thing for Nigerians to live with. The security of the country has drastically deteriorated with no lasting solution in sight.

Poor Governance 

Having people who don’t have the interest of the citizens at heart in power has been one horrible situation we battle with for years as Nigerians. ‘May Nigeria not happen to you’, has become a memory verse for Nigerians. This is in light of corruption often associated with people at the helm of affairs in the country and other areas of our everyday lives. 

Economic Hardship 

According to reports, the number of Nigerians living in multidimensional poverty has risen to 133 million. Mismanagement and bad economic policies have escalated the hardships being faced by Nigerians. An average Nigerian can hardly survive without multiple streams of income. One of the causes for this is the inflation and devaluation of the country’s currency on the global market.

The country’s poor economy is another one of the numerous reasons people are leaving the country. Who doesn’t want a more comfortable life? And they believe this is possible outside Nigeria. So, why not? 

What is the Way Out?

A country free of problems is hardly feasible anywhere with the major problems facing the world currently. However, there are non-negotiables for any country that wants to tackle the problem of brain drains and other problems that are associated with citizens’ emigration. 

Providing Investment and Employment Opportunities

There is the need to provide sustainable employment and improved working conditions for the employable class. The government should make efforts to improve the state of the economy and infrastructural development to attract investors who will create job opportunities fulfilling the needs of current generations without compromising the needs of future generations.

Eradicating Corruption

Also, there must be efforts to eradicate corruption and its effects. Transparency in every sector strengthens the faith of people in the government. The country’s security should be strengthened to reduce the crime rate, and everyone would be accountable for their actions as justice will prevail in the absence of corruption.

Improve the Educational System

An improved education system is important to reduce the rate at which students and lecturers move out of the country. Scholarship programs for students to study abroad should be well monitored to ensure that people return after their studies and are absorbed into necessary parastatals for development. 


People continue to leave their country of birth for many reasons known to them. Nevertheless, there is a need to provide better living conditions to mitigate the problem of brain drain that stems from a large number of productive citizens leaving the country. 

Israel Okunaya

I'm Israel Okunaya, an ace food and blockchain Writer, Content Marketer, and Product Manager. Keep tabs on my writings to experience several worlds in textual reality.