• Nigeria has been ranked with the largest number of extreme poor people in 2018 with about 87 million poor people

More than two years after Nigeria and other countries signed the pact to end extreme poverty by 2030 as part of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), the country has been ranked with the largest number of extremely poor people in 2018.

At the end of May 2018, a report by The World Poverty Clock indicated that Nigeria had about 87 million people in extreme poverty, compared with India’s 73 million.

The report stated that extreme poverty in Nigeria is growing by six people every minute, and by the end of 2018 in Africa as a whole, there will probably be about 3.2 million more people living in extreme poverty than there is today.

While analysing the report, analysts and policy development at Washington-based Brookings Institution stated Africans account for about two-thirds of the world’s extreme poor.

“ If current trends persist, they will account for nine-tenths by 2030. Fourteen out of 18 countries in the world - where the number of extreme poor is rising - are in Africa.”

According to Brookings Institution projections, Nigeria has already overtaken India as the country with the largest number of extreme poor in early 2018, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo could soon take over the number two spot.

The report also noted that between January 1, 2016, when implementation of internationally agreed Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) started, and July 2018, the world had seen about 83 million people escape extreme poverty.

The world second richest man, Bill Gates, at his recent visit to the Nigeria advised policy makers and the government to maximise the nation's greatest resource, which is the Nigerian people, saying the country will only thrive when every citizen is able to thrive.

He said to anchor the Nigerian economy over the long term, investments in infrastructure and competitiveness must go hand in hand with investments in people.

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