NBS: 133 million Nigerians living in poverty

The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) reports that nearly 133 million Nigerians are multidimensionally poor, or 63 percent of the country's population.

The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) reports that nearly 133 million Nigerians are multidimensionally poor, or 63 percent of the country’s population.

This was one of the highlights of the 2022 Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) study launched by the Federal government on Thursday in Abuja.

According to the MPI study, 65% (86 million) of the poor reside in the North, whereas 35% (almost 47 million) are in the South.

The incidence of multidimensional poverty ranges from a low of 27% in Ondo to a high of 91% in Sokoto, illustrating the substantial variation that exists in poverty levels throughout the states.

The research added that more than half of Nigeria’s population is multidimensionally poor and cooks with dung, wood, or charcoal instead of cleaner energy. National deprivations are also evident in sanitation, access to healthcare, food insecurity, and housing.

“In general, the incidence of monetary poverty is lower than the incidence of multidimensional poverty across most states. In Nigeria, 40.1% of people are poor according to the 2018/19 national monetary poverty line, and 63% are multidimensionally poor according to the National MPI 2022.

“Multidimensional poverty is higher in rural areas, where 72% of people are poor, compared to 42% in urban areas.

“The National MPI is reported with a linked Child MPI, which provides additional information on Multidimensional Child Poverty in Nigeria,” highlighted the report.

According to the research, two-thirds (67.5%) of children (0–17) are multidimensionally poor according to the National MPI, and children account for half (51%) of the impoverished population.

The highest levels of deprivation are associated with the indicator of child engagement, where more than half of poor children lack the intellectual stimulation essential for early childhood development.

It was stated that “child poverty is prevalent in rural areas, with almost 90% of rural children experiencing poverty. Across the geo-political zones, the child MPI shows higher poverty in the North-East and North-West (where 90% of children are poor) and lower poverty in the South-East and South-West (74% and 65.1%, respectively).

“The incidence of Child MPI is above 50% in all States and greater than 95% in Bayelsa, Sokoto, Gombe, and Kebbi.

Four million Nigerians – 2.1% of the population – live with a child aged 15–17 who is the first generation in that household to have completed primary school”.

The Bureau, the National Social Safety-Nets Coordinating Office (NASSCO), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), and the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative collaborated on the survey, according to a statement released by the Bureau’s Director of Communications and Public Relations, Sunday Ichedi (OPHI).

The survey, performed between November 2021 and February 2022 and sampled approximately 56,000 homes across the 36 states of the Federation and the FCT, gives multidimensional poverty estimates at the senatorial district level.