Despite the various programmes put in place by the Jonathan administration since 2010, and that by previous administrations, over 50 per cent of Nigerian youth were unemployed in 2012. The data was provided by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on Tuesday.
The official data was contained in the "2012 National Baseline Youth Survey Report" issued in Abuja by the NBS in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Youths Development. The data is the most current on Nigerian youth by the government statistics agency.
The federal government has put in place programmes such as YouWin, Sure-P and others to create employment for millions of unemployed Nigerians, particularly the youth; with the government announcing the programmes as successful.
The NBS report, however, said "More than half, about 54 per cent of youth population were unemployed," in 2012.
"Of this, females stood at 51.9 per cent compared to their male counterpart with 48.1 per cent were unemployed," the report said.
It said out of 46,836 youth recorded against different types of crimes, 42,071, representing 75.5 per cent were males, while the remaining 24.5 per cent were females.
"Among the 32 different crimes committed, Marijuana (Indian hemp) smoking has the highest figure, representing 15.7 per cent.
"This was followed by theft and murder with 8.1 and 7.4 per cent, respectively. The least committed crime was Immigration/Emigration representing 0.04 per cent."
The report said more than five million youths indicated they were involved in conflict resolution at one level of governance or the other.
"But the response of the youths shows that most of them are involved in conflict prevention at the community level representing 64.9 per cent, while 30.9 per cent are involved at the ward level.
"Only 1.6 per cent are involved at the state level, while 83.9 per cent males are involved in football than females with 16.1 per cent.
"This is also obtainable in boxing, swimming, wrestling and tennis, however, a higher proportion of females, representing 81.1 per cent, are involved in volley ball than males with 18.9 per cent.
"In Hockey, 59.3 per cent females and 40.7 per cent males are involved, while 74 per cent females and 26 per cent males are involved in Track and Field events."
According to the survey, the population of youth aged between 15 and 35 years in Nigeria is estimated to be 64 million, while females are more than males in all age groups.
The report said Lagos State had the highest percentage of youths in Nigeria with 6.1 per cent, followed by Kano state representing 5.7 per cent, while Bayelsa State had the lowest with1.3 per cent.
"Out of the group of married youths, 68 per cent were females, while 32 per cent were males, the rate of divorce and widowhood was high among the female youths with 70.9 and 71.8 per cent, respectively while 38.5 per cent females were never married."
The report said the objective of the study was to provide useful data for the design and development of youth-focused programmes by the Federal Ministry of Youths Development and other partners in the country.
The study was aimed at generating empirical data to inform policy decisions and guide their implementation.
It was also aimed at providing government and other stakeholders with useful data that would assist in the development of young people's employability to ensure their successful transition to the labour market.