FACT CHECK: Was Nigeria’s Inflation Rate Highest Under Obasanjo?

Claim: The highest inflation rate in the history of Nigeria was recorded under former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s administration.

Verdict: False

Context:  During an interview with Arise TV on January 16, 2023, the spokesperson of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Presidential Campaign Council, Festus Keyamo said “This is not the highest inflation rate. In 2005 under Obasanjo and Atiku, we had a 28 percent inflation rate. Under Obasanjo and Atiku, we had the highest”.

The Obasanjo administration experienced an increase at some point, but as at 2007 when they left office, inflation rate was 5.39 percent, which showed an improvement from when they were sworn in as president in 1999 when the inflation rate was 6.62 per cent.

Verification: The former president, Olusegun Obasanjo and his vice president, Atiku Abubakar, ruled between 1999 and 2007. The economy experienced a rise in the inflation rate to about 18.87 percent with an annual rate increase of 11.94 percent.

However, a report by WorldData info reveals that the highest inflation in Nigeria was recorded in 1995 during the late General Sani Abacha regime at 72.84 percent with an annual rate increase of 15.80 per cent.

Conclusion: Based on investigations and verifiable data, fact-checkers at the Centre for Democracy & Development can confirm that the claim by Festus Keyamo suggesting that Nigeria’s inflation rate was highest during the Obasanjo administration is false.

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