By Obinna Chima
With an aggregate score of 109th out of 128 countries evaluated, Nigeria recorded one of the worldâ€™s worst performances globally in the 2017 Social Progress Index Report released yesterday.
The above mention score recorded by the country was an aggregate measure of sectors which included healthcare, education, housing, rights, tolerance and environmental indicators.
It showed that Nigeria registered one of the worldâ€™s worst performances globally in terms of how effectively the country’s economic wealth was translated into social progress as it achieved quality of life outcomes below what its per capita GDP ($5,639) suggests is possible.
This was despite making overall improvements in social progress outcomes over the last four years (2014-2017).
The report further showed that over the last four years Nigeria had seen improvements in Personal Freedom and Choice (due to changes in freedom over life choices and increased freedom of religion).
“Tolerance and Inclusion has improved over the last four years due to improvements in tolerance for immigrants and a better community safety net. Access to Information and Communications is another area of improvement because Nigeria increased its number of mobile phone subscriptions whilst proportion of the population who use the internet increased from 33 per cent in 2014 to 47 per cent in 2017.
Â “As a result Nigeria has one of the most connected populations in Africa.
Â However, despite gains in Personal Freedom and Choice (116th ranking) and Tolerance and Inclusion (114th ranking), these components are still areas where Nigeria lags significantly behind countries at a similar level of GDP per capita.
“Nigeria remains one of the worst countries in the world on discrimination against minorities and has one of the highest rates in world of early marriage, though this fell slightly from 33 per cent to 29 per cent of girls aged 15 to 19,” the index provider states.
It also showed that Nigeria was one of the most dangerous places in the world to live: on Personal Safety measures (125th ranking), saying that “Nigeria has a long way to go.”
“Levels of violent crime are high, perceived criminality is high, political terror is high and the homicide rate is high (on all these indicators, Nigeria ranks poorly, finishing in the bottom 25 countries globally).Â On Shelter (103rd), Water and Sanitation (115th) and Nutrition and Basic Medical Care (109th) Nigeria registers poor social progress outcomes across the board.”
The 2017 Index includes data from 128 countries on 50 indicators and covers 98 per cent of the world’s population.