20170518

Dangote, Adenuga, Others Can End Poverty In Nigeria

Oxfam International unveiled its ‘Inequality in Nigeria’ report in Abuja yesterday, which revealed the harsh economic reality in a country where 112 million citizens live in abject poverty.

The report stated that the combined wealth of five of her richest citizens, put at about $29.9bn, could end extreme poverty in Nigeria.

Quoting Forbes, the agency listed the five richest Nigerians as;
Aliko Dangote, with a net worth $14.4bn; Mike Adenuga, $9.9bn; Femi Otedola, $1.85bn; Folorunsho Alakija, $1.55bn; and Abdulsamad Rabiu, $1.1bn.

According to Oxfam, the report exposes the large and growing gap between the country’s rich and poor, adding that it also reveals how the benefits of economic growth are captured by a few wealthy elite at the expense of ordinary Nigerians.

It said the richest man in Nigeria earned 8,000 times more in one day than a poor citizen would spend on basic needs in a year.

The report listed Nigeria as one of the few countries where the number of people living in poverty was on the increase despite the growth of the economy, adding that 69 per cent of citizens in the North-East states were living below the poverty line, compared to 49 per cent in the South-West.

The reported further stated that poor people were not benefiting from Nigeria’s wealth because of high level of corruption and the excessive influence that big businesses and some wealthy elite had over the government and policymaking.

It alleged that public office holders stole an estimated sum of $20tn from the treasury between 1960 and 2005, while multinational firms received tax incentives estimated at $2.9bn a year.