Five Richest Nigerians’Wealth Enough To End Poverty in Nigeria – Oxfam Report

Five Richest Nigerians’Wealth Enough To End Poverty in Nigeria – Oxfam Report
Chris Steven, Abuja
 Lifting all Nigerian people living below the extreme poverty line of $1.90
out of poverty for one year will cost about $24 billion, an international
humanitarian non-governmental organisation, Oxfam has said.
The organisation in a report titled “Oxfam Nigeria Inequality Report”
released on Wednesday said “This amount of money is just lower than the
total wealth owned overall by the five richest Nigerians in 2016, which
was equal to $29.9 billion.”
In the executive summary of the report, Oxfam remarks that Nigeria is
still seen as Africa’s largest economy and one of the fastest-growing in
the world despite the prevailing recession lamenting that more than half
of the population grapples with extreme poverty, while a small group of
elites enjoys ever-growing wealth.
It maintained that poverty and inequality in Nigeria were not due to lack
of resources, but to the ill-use, misallocation and misappropriation of
such resources adding that a culture of corruption and rent-seeking
combined with a political elite out of touch with the daily struggles of 
average Nigerians are also responsible for the high level poverty in the
country.
“While more than 112 million people were living in poverty in 2010,   The
richest Nigerian man will take 42 years to spend all of his wealth at 1
million per day.  According to Oxfam’s calculations, the amount of money
that the richest Nigerian man can earn annually from his wealth is
sufficient to lift 2 million people out of poverty for one year.
Lifting all Nigerian people living below the extreme poverty line of $1.90
out of poverty for one year will cost about $24 billion. This amount of
money is just lower than the total wealth owned overall by the five
richest Nigerians in 2016, which was equal to $29.9 billion” Oxfam said in
the report.
According to the report that attempts to provide a picture of the current
state of poverty and economic inequality in Nigeria, the scale of economic
inequality has reached extreme levels, noting that the inequality reflects
in the daily struggles of the majority of the population in the face of
accumulation of obscene amounts of wealth by a small number of individuals
It lamented that poverty in Nigeria is particularly outrageous as it has
been growing in the context of an expanding economy where the benefits
have been reaped by a minority of people, and have bypassed the majority
of the population.
Annual economic growth averaged over 7 percent in the 2000s,  and yet
Nigeria is one of the few African countries where both the number and the
share of people living below the national poverty line over that period,
increased from 69 million in 2004 to 112 in 2010, equivalent to 69 percent
of the population. In the same period the number of millionaires increased
by approximately 44 percent. Income inequality, as measured by the Gini
Index, grew from 40% in 2003 to 43 percent in 2009.
Regional inequality is high in Nigeria, and it translates into higher
rates of poverty in the north-western states of the country. For example,
in Sokoto State, 81 percent of the population is poor, while poverty
incidence is much lower, at 34 percent, in Niger” the report revealed .