Obi: Rising Poverty in Nigeria Worrisome

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By Chuks Okocha

The vice-presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 elections, Mr. Peter Obi, has warned that no nation can develop and prosper with a rising large poor population as in Nigeria.

Obi in a statement to mark the World Poverty Day said that the growing poverty rate in Nigeria should worry every concerned leader because there couldn’t be national growth under this situation.

The 2019 vice presidential candidate of PDP whose remarks came against the backdrop of the Pope’s prayers to mark the World Day of the Poor, agreed that poverty anywhere remains a threat to national growth.

The former Anambra State governor explained how important it is for governments, organisations and wealthy individuals around the world to devote more energy and resources to eradicating poverty and creating a better world for all to live and thrive in, particularly in Nigeria which has the highest number of people living in poverty.

He admonished government agencies, organisations and wealthy people around the country to join hands to combat poverty and reduce it to the barest minimum so as to have safe environment.

“Poverty is dehumanizing, it is therefore left for humanity to create a better world by putting measures in place to eradicate poverty and give everyone the chance to live a meaningful life.

Lamenting that Nigeria has become the poverty capital of the world, with over 90 million people living in poverty, and more than 15 million out-of-school children roaming the streets, Obi said that the government could not continue to turn a blind eye to such depressing situation.

He advised governments in Nigeria to sincerely and aggressively invest in the key areas of economic growth to enable them lift people out of poverty in no distant time noting that investment in education and health, and support for small businesses, remain the pivotal ways of eradicating poverty in any nation.

“To combat poverty in Nigeria, organizations and wealthy individuals must deploy their resources to support government investments in these critical areas.

“May we not forget the words of Our Lord Jesus Christ that ‘Whatsoever you do to the least of my brothers, that you do unto me.’ We need to understand that the job of poverty eradication and ensuring a better society is for all of us,” Obi concluded.