Monday, January 11, 2010

Two conflicting stories for Nigeria

Two different stories on All Africa today pose two very different assumptions on the economy in Nigeria. Dr. Magnus Kpakol head of the poverty reduction program for the government of Nigeria says that the poverty rate is falling. However, the head economist at Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, Dr. Mike Duru says that the poverty rate is rising.

First from this Daily Trust article that we found at All Africa, we find Dr. Kpakol's comments.

Daily Trust had reported that in 1980, 28% of Nigerians were poor; in 1985 the poverty ratio grew to 46% and dropped to 42% in 19992. In 1996, the ratio was 65.6%, in 1990 it was 70% and in 2004 it fell to 54.4%. He said the current poverty rate is less than 50 per cent and that Nigerians are richer.

He said though the actual data is collated by the National Bureau of Statistics which is expected to come up this year.

He said: "The poverty rate has drop because for example if you look at the economy, and look at what happens in say agriculture, you will realise that there is growth in the sector last year and that growth in output means something happened there. If you look across board, you will see that the overall GDP growth rate in the economy grew by about 6%.All of that growth took place in the non-oil sector where you have people getting jobs."

Daily Trust writer Jibrin Abubakar received quotes from Dr Duru.

Head of Economics Department of the Ahmadu Bello University Zaria Dr. Mike Duru has said that poverty rate is rising in Nigeria.Dr. Duru who spoke to Daily Trust on phone said the quality of lives of Nigerians is falling. He described as misleading equating rise in Nigeria's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) to fall in poverty.

Provisional data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) indicated that real GDP grew by 8.23 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2009, up from 4.50, 7.22 and 7.07 per cent in the first, second and third quarters.

But the overall GDP growth for 2009 was projected at 6.90, up from 5.98 in 2008; hence the non-oil sectors remain the major driver of the economy.

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