Disturbed by the high rate of poverty, banditry and kidnapping in northern Nigeria, the Arewa New Agenda Forum, has called on President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to evolve strategies to address them.
The convener of the forum, Senator Ahmad Abubakar MoAllahyidi, made the request at a press conference in Abuja yesterday.
MoAllahyidi said Nigeria has been adjudged the world‘s capital for extreme poverty, stressing that this assertion is couched on the data which shows that about five people are dragged into extreme poverty every minute.
He said of about 218 million people in Nigeria nearly 94 million people live in extreme poverty.
On the one-day dialogue session with the theme: „Renewed Hope – The Road To End Poverty In Nigeria“, MoAllahyidi said, “This great country of good people accounts for 15.8 percent of the people living in extreme poverty worldwide, caused by insecurity, banditry, corruption, oil theft, amongst others.”
According to him, the statistics showed that 10.2 million out-of-school children of which 98 percent are from the North while 50 percent of the number being nomads. He noted that 15 states of the 36 states of the federation contributed to this 10.2 million and 14 of the 15 states are from the North; only Oyo State is from the South West part of the country respectively. He noted that, 88.4 million Nigerians live in extremely poverty, and almost 80 percent of the 88.4 million people living in poverty are from the northern part of the country.
He said the forum of like-minded individuals came together to promote the continuing prominence, relevance, innovation and development of “the north” through a vision “of a Nigeria; where the north is capable, vibrant and takes ownership of its future.”
“As we consider the issues related to poverty reduction, ANA is not unmindful of two critical issues that have direct bearing on fighting poverty in northern Nigeria. One is the rift between two global business icons of northern origin and pillars of poverty reduction in Nigeria,” he said.