CLAIM: Nigeria has the highest number of poor people, out of school children and in maternal and child mortality, says Tope Fasua
CONCLUSION: True, Nigeria has the highest number of poor people and out-of-school children but it does not hold the gold medal in maternal and child mortality!
The Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) on January 15, 2018 held a debate on “Corruption and Accountability” at the Sheraton Hotel, Abuja for six of the registered political parties. The parties were represented either by their presidential candidates or top-ranking members.
The six parties are: All Progressives Congress (APC), Africa Action Congress (AAC), Abundant Nigeria Renewal Party (ANRP), People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN) and Young Progressives Party (YPP). However, the APC was neither present nor represented at the debate. The debate was monitored by Dubawa, a fact-check initiative of Premium Times Centre for Investigative Journalism
At the debate, the presidential candidate of the Abundant Nigeria Renewal Party (ANRP), Tope Fashua said: “Nigeria has the highest number of poor people, out of school children, maternal and child mortality.“
When Dubawa contacted Mr Fashua on telephone, he said: “I made those claims”. He also affirmed that he got his facts from world poverty clock, world bank and UNESCO.
But how true are these claims?
Claim 1: Nigeria has the highest number of poor people
Information from the World Bank and the United Nations (UN), were used to fact check this claim.
World Poverty Clock is a tool used to monitor progress against poverty, both globally and regionally. Created by the Vienna-based non-governmental organization, World Data Lab, it uses effective models to estimate poverty in different countries, covering 99.7% of the world’s population.
The United Nations standard for measuring extreme poverty is living on less than US $1 a day, while the World Bank regards extreme poverty as living on less than US $1.90 a day. People living in extreme poverty are unable to meet their minimal needs for survival.
According to World Poverty Clock, Nigeria’s population is rising by 5.7 people per minute while the rest of Africa is reducing by 4.7 people per minute. As such, Nigeria is listed among the 17 countries where extreme poverty is rising. The other 16 countries listed in the research by World Poverty Clock are Congo, Angola, Gambia, Burundi, Belize, Zambia, Chad, Venezuela, Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar, Malawi, South Sudan, Somalia and Suriname.
At the time of this research, the World Poverty Clock states that approximately 83 million Nigerians (about 83,205,214 people) which represent 42.6% of Nigeria’s population of 195,457,066 people are living in extreme poverty.
This is in direct contrast to the poverty index for India now former world poverty capital. According to the Clock, approximately 79 million Indians (about 78,618,977 people) which represents only 5.8% of India’s population of 1,354,013,957 people are living in extreme poverty.
Considering the available data, the statement of Mr. Fashua on poverty in Nigeria is TRUE. Nigeria has actually overtaken India as the world’s capital of extreme poverty and therefore has the highest poor people.
RELATED FACTCHECK – https://dubawa.org/are-there-more-extremely-poor-people-in-nigeria-than-india/
Claim 2: Nigeria has highest number of out-of-school children
We used the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), Nigeria’s official agency for the production and dissemination of statistical data about Nigeria and the coordination of statistical operations across all Federal Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), State Statistical Agencies (SSAs) and Local Government Councils (LGCs) in the country for this fact check.
The most recent household survey done in Nigeria in 2016 and published in 2017, the fifth round Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS5) which was conducted by the NBS with the support of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), the National Agency for the Control of Aids (NACA) and UNICEF inadvertently confirms the claim.
The survey report shows that a total of 9.1 million children are out-of-school in Nigeria. In the NBS survey report, out-of-school children is defined as the number of out-of-school children of primary school age who are not attending school and those attending pre-school.
Available data from the NBS, the official statistical authority on Nigeria shows that Nigeria TRULY has the highest number of out-of-school children.
Claim 3: Nigeria has the highest maternal and child mortality
The most recent data about maternal mortality from the World Bank shows that Nigeria has the fourth worst maternal mortality ratio per 100,000 live births in the world (814). Chad has 856, Central African Republic is 882 and Sierra Leone is 1360.
Considering these, the claim by Mr Fashua that Nigeria has highest number of maternal and child mortality is FALSE.