State of the nation: 61 yrs after independence, Nigerians poorer now than ever – World Bank report

Says number of poor Nigerians may hit 100m by 2022 

The World Bank has projected that the number of poor people in Nigeria will increase by 20 million by 2022.

The World Bank senior economist, Gloria Joseph-Raji, was speaking at the launch of a 2021 macro-economic outlook report by the Nigeria Economic Summit Group, (NESG). 

Quoting the monthly Covid-19 impact survey carried out by the National Bureau of Statistics, (NBS),  Joseph-Raji, said most households have remained in an economically precarious situation despite the pickup in economic activities after the lockdown was lifted.

According to a 2020 report released by the NBS showed that 82.9 million Nigerians were living in poverty in 2019.

Also, while delivering the 19th convocation lecture of Nigeria Defence Academy, (NDA), Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, said excruciating poverty in Nigeria was responsible for widespread insecurity. 

Ahmed said there was a near-global consensus among world leaders, policy experts and academics that the fight against poverty was essential to ensuring global peace, security and stability. 

“These mutually reinforcing phenomena have been coined the ‘doom spiral’; poverty is both a cause of insecurity and an outcome of it”, she added. 

According to the NBS, then known as the Federal Office of Statistics, about 15% of the population was poor by 1960, rising to 28% in 1980.

The latest report from Nigeria Employers Consultative Association, (NECA), also shows that the incidence of poverty rose by 10% between 2019 and 2020. 

In the October 2020 report, NECA said the number of citizens in extreme poverty stood at 102 million, representing 50% of Nigeria’s estimated population of 205 million. 

The World Bank also said that in June this year, 11 million additional Nigerians would fall into extreme poverty by 2022.  Nigeria was ranked 39th place in average GDP growth during the period. 

Similarly, the global auditing firm, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) warned that if corruption was not dealt with immediately, it will cost Nigeria up to 37% of its GDP by 2030, amounting to nearly $2,000 per Nigerian resident by 2030. 

Recent international investigations have alleged that both the 2015 and 2019 general elections were funded by bribe monies from crude oil merchants.

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