In the global economy, Nigeria is known to be one of the largest countries when it comes to the production of oil. Nigeria is rich in mineral resources, one that serves as a major role in the global economy is “OIL.” Poverty is a major global issue affecting all parts of the world especially developing countries. This essay discusses the issue of poverty in Nigeria. Nigeria is a country rich in mineral resources such as oil, yet majority of its population live below the poverty line. This essay provides an analysis of how oil and corruption have played a major role in the poverty rate in Nigeria.
Corruption has played a major role in the economy in Nigeria and the effect on the society in the global economy of the modern world. The biggest single problem Nigeria faces today is the thriving corruption both past and present, which is hanging over its future. It has divided the country and kept two-third of the population under poverty line. Due to the exploited oil that has ruined the local environment and caused huge poverty with people living near the oil rigs, this has caused kidnapping and violence in the Niger Delta. The corruption in Nigeria also has an effect on “ Boko Haram” a Muslim sect/group causing havoc in the North with its recent terrorist attack on the united nation, although Boko Haram which means no western education exists because of its radical view of Islam but the root cause of the existence of boko haram is the vast poverty suffered in the northern part of Nigeria. The governor in a northern state said: Out of 4 million citizen about 1 million are beggars written in the economist magazine, naturally violence is not the way out but this is the height of everything and the only way is to make the rich reason with the poor.
Nigeria as a leading oil exporting country which its vast majority of its revenues has no limit to its resources or its limit to its talent and potentials, but the fact that the country is rich does not mean that our people are not facing a major challenge. Nigeria as a country has so many problems, to top it up our leaders don’t have respect for the rule of law. Theodor quotes: “ No man is above the law and no man is below it: nor do we ask any man's permission when we ask him to obey it.” Here in Nigeria you will definitely find people who are above the law, they make sure they get what they want at all cost. One reason for the failure to bring offenders to trials is, of course fear concerning who else might be implicated in any testimony given. Corruption is an enemy of democracy, for Democracy lives on trust and corruption destroys trust. Till date corruption is like a deadly virus amongst all Nigerians, obstructing Nigeria’s path towards development rather than decrease, corruption is becoming a way of life. Since independence, every government has made one promise or the other to make Nigeria a better country (reforms) but all goes to no avail. About 45% of nigerians are still poor, lack access to clean water, consistent electricity, education, job opportunity, unhealthy, exposed to various diseases (HIV/AIDS), lack access to medical healthcare.
The spread of poverty and break down of infrastructural facility is really becoming alarming also, how leaders are not helping matters to make situations better. The rate of corruption has discouraged countries into lending loans and involve in investments. Except the oil sector; that’s because developed countries are exploiting us (the developing country), reason being that our leaders are not wise enough and can’t apply wit in decision makings. Our national reputation for corruption encourages further abuse since, no one’s reputation suffers through acting dishonestly. Most of our ex-public officials are shameless looters. Since 1970, both military and civilian, have promised to raise ethical standards and eliminate corruption, but any success? no, Corruption seemed to be common in the fourth Republic until the EFCC and other anticrime agencies were created. You may wonder why protesters are not spilled into the streets of Nigeria cities, that’s because the citizens of Nigeria are full of decency and morality. We are a peace making country that’s satisfied with what we’re being fed with rather than making situations worse. There was thrive of a very serious allegation of looting against former Governor James Ibori,which played out in London Courts. The governor took care of himself, but he shamelessly forgot the citizens of Delta State with the flamboyant lifestyle he lived. It is a story that embarrasses a nation that holds itself with so much pride.
One solution which is essential is bringing the criminals to justice, recovery of the money and assets, also the execution of the criminals. These assets cannot be overlooked because they are meant for public funds $4 billion with the Abachas, $12billion with the Babangidas e.t.c. The dangers in failing will lead to a further decline of the national economy, poverty has provided the rationale for outsiders to exploit us. We do not need International interference to makes us realize it, it has been there and if we don’t eradicate it now it might lead to a more alarming situation. Since the political class has become a constant in the nation’s corruption, the Nigeria Diaspora, must take up the challenge.
By Bolanle Adekunle