Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has expressed concern with the high rate of Nigerians who are living in extreme poverty.
Last year, Nigeria overtook India as the nation with the highest number of people living in extreme poverty across the world. According to available data courtesy of the World Poverty Clock, a web tool produced by World Data Lab, an estimated 93.8 million Nigerians are measured to be living on less than $1.90 a day as of June 2019.
While speaking at a dinner and interactive session with faculty members of the Harvard Business School (HBS) in Lagos on Tuesday, June 18, Osinbajo said he looks forward to an industrialised nation with most people living above the poverty line.
He said, “I think what keeps me up at night has to do with extreme poverty; the issue is that the largest number of those who vote for us are the very poor.
“The promises that government makes to them is that their lives will be better and obviously they are looking at their lives being better in the shortest possible time.
“I will like to see Nigeria being an industrialised nation in the next 10 years; a very strong middle class and most people living above poverty line.”
While delivering his Democracy Day speech at the Eagle Square, Abuja on June 12, President Muhammadu Buhari said purposeful leadership will ensure that 100 million Nigerians can be lifted out of poverty over a period of 10 years.
“With leadership and sense of purpose, we can lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in 10 years,” he said.
Buhari promised that his administration will take bold steps to transform Nigeria and liberate Nigerians from the shackles of poverty.
While speaking on Tuesday, Osinbajo said the president’s administration has lifted many farmers out of poverty by focusing on the agriculture sector which has enjoyed attention from the government that was inaugurated in 2015.
He said the government’s social intervention programmes have also helped traders in the country.