"Daily, all in the name of traveling abroad to study; Africa loses her hope for the future."
- Sebastian Ebatamehi
According to a new report made available by Pan-African research network Afrobarometer, more than a third of Africans have thought about emigrating, and it is disheartening that very few are trying to do so through legal means. But why is everyone trying to leave?
One of the greatest potentials of the African continent lies in its numbers, but this number comes to waste and is utterly useless if the brightest among us continue to eave the shores of the continent in search of education or work.
Today, our population that was once seen as a plus is now regarded as a problem as European countries continue to complain of the increasing number of African migrants that enter into their countries yearly. Among these are the brightest minds and intelligent individuals with the potential of turning the continent for the better.
In what may appear to be hope in the midst of worry however is the fact that the Pan-African research network Afrobarometer which collated information from 34 countries have released the results of the survey today to reveal that many Africans also consider migration within the continent, which is a good thing.The key findings of the Pan-African research network Afrobarometer report (as published) are:
- On average across 34 countries, one in four Africans (25%) say someone in their family has lived in another country during the past three years.
- About one in five Africans (21%) say they are somewhat dependent on remittances sent from abroad.
- More than one in three Africans (37%) have considered emigrating, including 18% who have given this "a lot" of thought.A majority of citizens say they have thought at least "a little bit" about leaving Cabo Verde (57%), Sierra Leone (57%), the Gambia (56%), Togo (54%), and São Tomé and Príncipe (54%).
- Among those who have considered emigrating, on average one in 10 (9%) say they are currently making preparations to move.These proportions are highest in Zimbabwe and Lesotho.
- Poor people are more likely to migrate to escape hardship while those who are well off are seeking educational and business opportunities and adventure.
- Among potential emigrants, more than one-third would like to move to another country within their region (29%) or elsewhere in Africa (7%). This preference for staying on the continent is especially strong in Southern Africa (58%) and weakest in North Africa (8%). Europe (27%) and North America (22%) are the most preferred destinations outside Africa.
- In almost all countries, by far the most frequently cited reasons for emigrating are to look for work (44% on average) and to escape poverty and economic hardship (29%).
- In line with widespread interest in intra-regional migration and the pursuit of economic opportunity, a majority (56%) of Africans think people should be able to move freely across international borders within their region. But the same proportion (56%) say they find it difficult to cross borders to work or trade in another country.
- Young, educated, urban men are generally more likely to say they are taking concrete steps (as well as thinking of leaving within a year or two) than their older, less-educated, rural, and female counterparts.
What are your thoughts?
Header Image Credit: smuedu.org