I have just run into this Punch article, Nigerians Are Getting Poorer, Says IMF
While a GOOD doctor could look at symptoms to diagnose an illness – and no further , a GREAT doctor would check the underlying causes, and focus more on that, because symptoms emanate from deeper causes. Saying Nigerians are poorer is like that doctor stopping at observing symptoms, and going ahead to prescribe a treatment.
Have Nigerians become less rapacious in their greedy ways at all (not just government) levels? Are the cause of the debilitating poverty a result of things within or outside of our capability to tackle (ẹ.g oil prices, brain drain)?
Maybe Nigerians are getting poorer because the rich among them are unfairly getting even richer (having cornered the major part of our finite national resources)?
These are the things I believe an intelligent mind would consider, rather than tacitly Point Fingers At Government / Leaders, as usual these days.
If we say Nigeria has come out of recession, and inflation has significantly slowed, how can a rational person say Nigerians are getting poorer? Poorer relative to when government couldn’t pay salaries all over the federation, and the foreign reserves were down there ? Compared to now when our reserves are healthy and the economy is on an upward swing?
Would love to know the metrics used in a country that cannot even determine accurately how many citizens there are, not to talk of their earning / purchasing power! Perhaps some people somewhere abroad just sat in some air conditioned office, pressed some buttons ona computer,and voilà, made a pronouncement?
Someone may look at the level of savings in the bank, and compare to earlier years and conclude Nigerians are getting poorer. That may not tell an accurate story, however, as Nigerians are heavily investing in Bitcoins, and corrupt politicians are now shunning the banks because of the body language of the present administration. Clearly, lots of funds have been repatriated abroad. And the discovery of high volumes of raw cash shows there is more illicit money outside the banking sector than within it – now.
BVN is a birch!
Recently, Transparency International also said that our Corruption Perception Index (CPI) Is Worsening. I consider this curious, just like this statement that Nigerians are getting poorer. Nigeria was also rated as the largest economy in Africa at one point, and a few months later, Nigeria was on its knees economically. A populace whose larger proportion of citizens generally lacks purchasing power, sighy decimated productive capacity, then, being called the largest economy? I do not get that
It is very difficult to believe these assertions willy-nilly because we are not particularly good in metrics in the country. The international agencies have to mostly rely on data fed to it, and crunch those data. The quality or trustworthiness of their conclusion cannot be separated from the integrity of the input.
Garbage in garbage out.
Also, the fact that these revelations are coming from these bodies close to election period may have political undertones. I may of course be wrong.
Of course, opinions are like pebble on a beach. Everybody has one. So, one would be free to take this IMF pronouncement as another opinion.
Assertions without rigorously verifiable empiricism can also be waved aside in a cavalier fashion.
On second thoughts, maybe Nigerians are truly getting poorer. Nigerians are mostly corrupt people. Like OBJ said, corruption is in our bones, and not blood!
Corruption / greed is the lubricant in the wheel of the Nigerian Economy..
The present government is trying to confront corruption, and we can agree it is no longer quite business as usual.. Illegal money is not flowing like it used to.
So, personal economies may be down for many. Yes, Nigeria could be getting poorer.. but it would be for their own long-term good..!
My humble submission.