Raqqa continues to witness a significant rise in youth unemployment rates. This coincides with the economic recession in the markets, the high prices of most food and commercial goods, and the depreciation of the Syrian pound against the greenback.
The high youth unemployment rates in Raqqa and the lack of job opportunities prompted many young people to register their names with the Employment Office of the Social Affairs and Labor Committee in the Autonomous-Administration.
However, corruption and nepotism among some employees of the Employment Office in Raqqa City have deprived a wide range of young men and women of their right to apply for vacancies in the Autonomous-Administration’s institutions and departments, as well as in vacancies in local organizations operating in the city.
Private sources told SY24 that a number of employees of the Employment Office of the Raqqa Civil Council recruit their relatives and acquaintances, who do not have any practical experience or university degree, in vacancies with the Autonomous-Administration’s institutions or organizations operating in the city. This comes despite the presence of thousands of young university students who have been waiting for their turn for years.
The sources pointed out that some employees of the Employment Office blackmailed young men and women, by asking for half of their monthly salary for a year if they were hired. These employees also collect lump sums from young people reaching up to 2000 USD, in order to nominate them to work for local organizations working in the city.
Yasser al-Abdullah, a resident of the al-Karama neighborhood in Raqqa city and a graduate of the University of Economics in 2010, said that he “registered his name in the employment office since 2018, but so far has not obtained a job yet. This comes despite the office nominating many people who have been registered after (him).”
Speaking to SY24, he said: “Corruption and nepotism in the employment office in Raqqa are characteristics of the office’s work, which has not yet provided real jobs for young people, on the contrary, blackmails them financially in order to hire them.”
“There are employees who get bribes in cash before they submit your name and get the job, and there are others who ask for half of your monthly salary or two months’ salary in order to nominate you. In both cases we are the ones who lose and they are the ones who win,” he said.
Raqqa city is witnessing an exodus and displacement of young people outside the areas of control of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in northeastern Syria, in order to find better jobs and provide a decent life for them and their families. This is a result of the poor economic situation in their areas, and the failure of the Autonomous-Administration to provide them with good jobs.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.