Unemployed Nigerians find solace in sports betting, make it full-time job

Like many researchers, Andrew Ejike gets dressed and leaves his house in Enugu town in the morning. A computer laptop bag, which he carries like a suitcase, indicates he is visiting the workplace. If he returns home from the evening, his neighbors frequently ask:”How was work today?” And he answers by saying,”Work was nice”.
Interestingly, Ejike doesn’t have work, and certainly doesn’t have a formal job. He is unemployed.
However he has’created’ a’job’ for themself. He is, more or less, a ‘professional’ punter. Sports betting is what Ejike does and when he leaves ‘work’ every morning on working days, the’office’ that he goes is really any sports pub around town.
On getting to the pub, Ejike would install his laptop, connect to the Internet with a mobile device, open the web site of any of the cellular sports gambling companies and begin working on predictions, or permutations, so as to come up with the bets he would set to the day.
A bachelor’s degree holder in Estate Management from a national university, Ejike has been sustaining himself and his young family with proceeds from sports betting after failing to secure a stable occupation because he graduated more than 10 years ago.
In a conversation with our correspondent, Ejike explained that he lost two previous jobs after the firms that he had been working for closed down.
“The pay from the jobs wasn’t much anyway but I think there is dignity in labor. I was also expecting that along the line I would get something larger and more secure. But I couldn’t even hold on to these jobs because the firms closed down and nothing better came along,” he explained.

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