CLAIM: Did Buhari’s administration Provide succour for poor Nigerians to earn a living?
CONTEXT: Muhammadu Buhari in his handover speech on May, 28th 2023 stated that his government provided poor Nigerians with a new lease of life and granted women opportunities to earn a living.
He said, “Furthermore, we increased the ability of the poor and rural Nigerians to earn a living, provided more food for millions in our villages and gave our women opportunities to earn a living.”
VERIFICATION: CDD fact check shows that the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari introduced some empowerment programmes to alleviate poverty and improve skills and social wellbeing of Nigerians. These programmes include the N-Power, Graduate Entrepreneurship Empowerment Programme, school feeding programme, Conditional Cash Transfer to poor Nigerians, tradermoni, marketmoni, among others. These programmes formally domiciled in the office of the Vice President were later moved to the ministry of humanitarian affairs.
The federal government has said it spends at least N500 billion annually to execute these social welfare projects. However, since the inception of these programmes in over six years, it has made little or no impact to reduce poverty or make Nigerians earn a good living. This is corroborated by the recent report by the National Bureau of Statistics on poverty.
According to the report released by the “National Multidimensional Poverty Index” six out of 10 persons are multidimensionally poor. The report, which is the first poverty index survey published by the NBS since 2010, said that 65 per cent of the poor (86 million people) live in the North, while 35 per cent (about 47 million) live in the South. The report also noted that multidimensional poverty is higher in rural areas, with 72 percent of the people living in poverty and 42 per cent in urban areas.
What is multidimensional poverty?
According to the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative, multidimensional poverty entails poor health, lack of education, inadequate living standards, and living in environmentally hazardous areas, among others. This means that under the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari, 63 per cent of Nigerians are poor because they lack access to health and education and suffer poor living standards, alongside unemployment and other economic shocks. Consequently, this entails that any Nigerian that cannot afford more than one of the essential survival needs as stated in the report, such as good health, basic education, good living standards and gainful employment, is multidimensionally poor.
CONCLUSION: Analysis shows that under Muhammadu Buhari’s administration, 63 percent of the Nigerian population are poor because they lack access to health and education and suffer poor living standards, alongside unemployment and other economic shocks. The programmes introduced by his administration have made little or no impact to reduce poverty or make Nigerians earn a good living.