In the year 1980, the late Afrobeat Maestro Fela Anikulapo Kuti that used the word “overtake don overtake overtake” in one of his songs as a metaphor for the evils of the military leadership in the country at that time. The country had begun to really experience the effect of politically fueled national decline, especially affecting our economic instability. Thirty eight years down the line, the situation has significantly worsened for Nigerians economically.
When the current administration was elected into office, it was on the promise that it would reverse the massive economic decline that had plagued President Goodluck Jonathan’s tenure as president, especially as regards fuel scarity. After a trying year, the government declared the country out of the recession and has touted theoretical achievements like the country becoming the largest on the continent and new investments from China. However, these achievements have not translated into real life progress fro the country, instead our metrics on ground seem to suggest we are still stuck in the worst recession in country’s history. Erudite economist Dr. Bismarck Rewane has described Nigeria’s present predicament as an economic “own goal”. The increasing state of poverty in the country has formed topical discussions across different fora in the country but the federal government keeps denying by churning out unverifiable data to support its claim that it has in deed created millions of jobs and that many Nigerians can go to Hajj. Sigh!
Reports by IMF was rebuffed, the report by the World Bank was condemned finally the World Poverty Clock in its latest report named Nigeria “poverty capital of the world”.
What a title!
According to the organization “At the end of May 2018, our trajectories suggest that Nigeria had about 87 million people in extreme poverty, compared with India’s 73 Million. What is more, extreme poverty in Nigeria is growing by six people every minute, while poverty in India continues to fall”. The World Poverty Clock in its November 2017 report, gave a warning that the country might overtake India with the continued rise in poverty among Nigerians. Like every other reports, the federal government failed to acknowledge or act on these reports.
Once again another major campaign promise of the APC led federal government to restore our economy and take away poverty has failed. India used to be the poverty capital of the world but it has taken its people out of poverty while Nigeria has sank into poverty!