The Governor of Sokoto State, Aminu Tambuwal, has refuted a report by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) that Sokoto is the poorest state in Nigeria.
Tambuwal made the observation Monday when he received a report titled ‘Sokoto Development Plan: 2020-2025’ at the Government House, Sokoto.
According to the April 2020 Nigerian Living Standards Survey (NLSS) report released by the NBS covering the year 2019, nine of top 10 poorest states in Nigeria are from the northern region with Sokoto, Taraba and Jigawa being the poorest.
“I do not intend to join issues with the NBS, but I appeal to them to come clear on their variable(s) and how they do their assessments of poor states in Nigeria; and then how they arrived at Sokoto being the poorest.
“We know that, as a matter of fact, something must be fundamentally defective and wrong with their processes and the outcome of those processes,” Tambuwal stated.
The fact of the matter, the governor explained, is “when you look at the programmes we are implementing in Sokoto State, they are people-friendly. They are promoting and supporting the vulnerable, the poorest of the poor.
“Even what we are doing through Zakkat and Waqf Commission (SOZECOM) alone, I am not aware that there is any state that is doing as much”.
Tambuwal’s administration has spent N4 billion on the upliftment of the businesses of over 200 small scale traders across the 23 local government areas of the state. This is in addition to the N258.8 million spent this year on the provision of relief material for orphans and the needy by SOZECOM, which in the preceding year spent N237.9 million on the same venture.
“Not only that, the enabling increase in ease of doing business and a lot of things that this administration has done to actually improve the lives and well-being of the citizens of the state,” the governor added.
He further stated that the state government shall monitor the NBS and see what it will come up with in its next report, “whether they will actually reflect the true position of Sokoto State in Nigeria in terms of rating of poor states”.
“We believe that we are not (poor) and in due course it would unfold,” the governor said.