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The Battle Against Poverty And Corruption 2019

Nigerians will on February 23 2019 troop out in their millions to either vote for or against Poverty And Corruption

Nigeria is Africa’s largest economy & the biggest oil producer.

But it is A Country where the gap between the Rich & the Poor is getting wider ahead of upcoming elections schedule for February/march 2019.

More than half of it’s population lives in Poverty. As 60% of the urban Population can not afford the cheapest house.

Lagos- where rich & poor lives side by side.

Photo by: Digitalglobe & BBC

The government of the day claim to have combated Poverty & Corruption, but blames past governments for mismanaging the oil industry & the economy.

Nigerian economy has only recently shown signs of recovery after a period of recession that ended in 2017. About 60% of the population lives in absolute poverty – measured by the number who can afford only the basic essentials of shelter, food & clothing. (this figures is from A household poverty survey released by the government in 2012) however, experts see little sign that the solution for the poorest has improved significantly.

Reports have it that the “unemployment rate provided by the present government’s National Bureau of Statistics is more than 20% and with increase in Population & continuing lack of Job, it is evident that the gap between the “Have” & the “Have Nots” will continue to widen in the Future.” Said ; Dr Bongo Adi, an economist at the Lagos business school.

Photo by: Alamy Stock

“Nigeria has a long history of mismanagement of public funds, corruption, & disregard for due process and that has contributed to high number of people living in Poverty, coupled with A wide spread perception that inequality is getting worse”, says; Abdulazeez Musa, OXfam’s Nigerian – based analyst.

As for the gap between Rich & Poor, Nigerian Economist, Bismarck Rewane estimates that ” only 5% of the population controls roughly about 40% of Nigeria’s Wealth. Poverty reduction policies do exist he says, but they are not backed up by the Political will or the good Governance to implement them simply because vested interest is far in excess of National interest, he says. ”

Reports shows that Poverty rates are higher in Northern states than they are in parts of the South.

Sokoto state in the far Northwest of the Country have the highest level of Poverty at 81% while the figures for the Southwestern state of Lagos is 34%.

A widely used measure of inequality that rates the distribution of Income in A society is known as “Gini Scale” for which the higher the number, the greater the inequality. Nigeria’s rate rose 15% between 2004 & 2010, the latest year for which the data is available

According to the World Bank, Nigeria is now the Country with the most Poor people in the World, overtaking India. For this reason the Two main contenders for the Nigeria’s top Job

(Atiku & Buhari) are out to seek Nigerian’s mandate in order to win the forth coming Presidential election with A strong promise to defeat Poverty & Corruption among Nigerians.

Let’s take a pause to check on what these Two major contenders represent:

Atiku Abubakar.

The man hoping to unsit Nigeria’s incumbent president.

1• Is A veteran politician & business tycoon

2• Born in 1946, in Northern state of Adamawa

3• Co- owner of multi National oil services company that started life in a Lagos shipping container.

4• oversaw privatization during two-terms as vice-president

5• fought against corruption charges, describing them as politically motivated.

6• founded America University which gives scholarship to some of the Chibok Girls who survived Boko Haram kidnapping.

7• His father, a devout Muslim, was briefly jailed for trying to stop him from attending a western – style school.

8• An Arsenal football supporter, he has four wives & 28 children.

Mr Abubakar’s reputation in business is linked to the spectacular Rise of Intels, The oil field logistic firm that he co-founded in 1982. From it’s original office in a shipping container, the company had grown into a multi National, multi – billion Naira operation, employing more than 10,000 people.

Muhammadu Buhari

As the President Muhammadu Buhari seeks re-election, he is a

1• Determined Disciplinarian.

2• Born in 1942, to A Muslim family in Northern Katsina state.

3• Former soldier, led military regime in 1980s, remembered for strictness a tardy civil servants to perform frog jumps in public

4• Won 2015 Presidential election, the first opposition candidate to defeat an incumbent, with promise to beat corruption & Boko Haram insurgents

5• Told wife she belonged in Kitchen after she complained in a BBC interview about his Government

6• After long absence from illness, had to deny rumours that he had been replaced in public by A look alike.

Among his successes, Mr Buhari can point to an improvement in security in the Northeast. Under his watch, Nigeria military has re-taken territories from Boko Haram militants that had been fighting to over throw the Government & create an Islamic state.

Photo: REUTERS

Scores of school Girls that were part of a group of nearly 300 abducted by the militants have also been reunited with their family. However, many of the Chibok Girls remain missing & recent attacks by A Boko Haram faction have under scored the fragility of the security gains.

Sources: IMF, BBC, Nigerian National Statistic Bureau.

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