The World Bank in a new report revealed that the Northern part of Nigeria; accounts for 87 per cent of all the poor people in Nigeria in 2016.
Entitled ‘Advancing social protection in a dynamic Nigeria’ and released on January 28, 2020, the report described a ‘detailed analysis of the social protection sector’ in the country.
The report noted that social protection measures implemented by the government in Nigeria had not been able to address the high level of poverty; as well as the negative impact of conflicts and natural disasters.
The World Bank further observed that although Nigeria was a richly endowed country; it had a larger proportion of the world’s extreme poor than any other nation — the majority of whom are domiciled in the North.
Looking at inequality in the country, the report said, “Nigeria experiences high inequality along geographic lines; with poverty mostly concentrated in the North and in rural areas.
“Poverty in the northern regions of the country has been increasing, especially in the North-West zone.
“Almost half of all the poor lived in the North-West and the North accounts for 87 per cent of all the poor in the country in 2016.”
“Poverty rates in the southern zones were around 12 per cent with little variation across zones. The South-South zone saw the most significant drop in poverty from 2011-2016.
“Poverty was significantly higher in rural areas of the country in 2016. An estimated 64 per cent of all poor lived in rural areas and 52 per cent of the rural population lived below the poverty line in 2016. In contrast, the poverty rate in urban areas remained stable at 16 per cent between 2011 and 2016.”
The World Bank further observed that the number of Nigerians living in extreme poverty went up from 2011 to 2016.
The poor in Nigeria lags far behind the rich in every human capital outcome; according to the World Bank Human Capital Index, where Nigeria ranked among the worst seven performers.
It noted that the rate of poverty in Nigeria increased from 35.0 to 38.8 per cent of the total population from 2011 to 2016.