A report by Brookings Institution, a nonprofit public policy organization in USA, has put Nigeria atop the world poverty statistics — ahead of India.
The report, titled ‘The Start of a New Poverty Narrative', says Nigeria has now taken over as the nation with the highest number of extremely poor people in the world, while the Republic of Congo is also rising as the second poorest in the world.
The report reads: “According to our 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 2 spot (Figure 1 below).
"At the end of May 2018, our trajectories suggest that Nigeria had about 87 million people in extreme poverty, compared with India’s 73 million. What is more, extreme poverty in Nigeria is growing by six people every minute, while poverty in India continues to fall.”
The report also predicted that by the end of 2018, there would be 3.2 million extremely poor people on the continent of Afrcia.
It says: “In fact, 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 are today.
"Africans account for about two-thirds of the world’s extreme poor and that If current trends persist, Africa 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.”
The report observed that it is becoming increasingly difficult to achieve the first goal of the Sustainable Development Goals, which is ending poverty.
I“Between January 1, 2016 — when implementation of internationally agreed Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) started — and July 2018, the world has seen about 83 million people escape extreme poverty," it stated. "But if extreme poverty were to fall to zero by 2030, we should have already reduced the number by about 120 million, just assuming a linear trajectory. To get rid of this backlog of some 35 million people, we now have to rapidly step up the pace.”