The World Bank estimates that almost 1.6 billion people in the world live in extreme poverty and subsist on an average of $1.25 or less a day, and 29% of that number live in sub-Saharan Africa.
Nigeria, as at June 2018, overtook India as the country with the most extreme poor people in the world, with 86.9 million Nigerians — about 50% of the country's estimated 180 million — living in extreme poverty.
But worse, according to the World Poverty Clock created by an Austria-based World Data Lab, in the past 4 months, 1.1 million Nigerians have slipped into extreme poverty, living on below $1.90 per day. This now brings the total number of Nigerians in extreme poverty to 88 million.
A problem that is more likely than not to multiply because, as we reported earlier in the year, Nigeria is still on course to become the world’s third largest country by 2050. And if history has taught us anything, it is that our problems are directly proportional to our number.
All major development institutions across the world predict that Nigeria will not attain the 2030 target for ending global poverty; and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation have reports that suggest West Africa, primarily, Nigeria will host 40% of the world’s poorest people by 2030.
While countries like Ethiopia, Ghana and Mauritania are working to end extreme poverty by 2030 and meet the United Nation's goals, Nigeria is clearly not as bothered. We have quite literally spent the past 30 years spreading poverty as widely as possible.