EconomyFact Check

Keyamo’s assertion Nigeria witnessed worst inflation rate under Obasanjo false

Claim: Nigeria had the highest inflation rate under Obasanjo-Atiku, not under Buhari.

Verdict: FALSE. The highest inflation rate occurred in 1995, while former president Olusegun Obasanjo’s two-term tenure commenced in 1999 and ended in 2007.

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The official spokesperson of the All Progressives Congress (APC)’s Presidential Campaign Council, Festus Keyamo, has lashed out at the presidential aspirant, Atiku Abubakar, and his party, the People Democratic Party (PDP), declaring that the highest inflation rate in the history of the country was recorded during the latter’s administration as vice-president to former president Olusegun Obasanjo. 

Mr Keyamo made the assertion in an interview with the news channel, AriseTV on Monday, January 16, 2023.

He was also reported by Vanguard newspaper to have said that the inflation rate witnessed under the Buhari-led administration isn’t the highest in the country’s history.

“This is not the highest inflation rate. In 2005, under Obasanjo and Atiku, we had a 28 per cent inflation rate. Under Obasanjo and Atiku, we had the highest,” he was quoted as saying by the newspaper.

This is happening in the aftermath of a series of political jibes between both parties, who have been at loggerheads since the realisation of each other’s strength on the political scene.

Due to the sensitivity of the matter, and the underlying critical perception it could have even on the upcoming 2023 elections, DUBAWA decided to look into it.


The former president, Olusegun Obasanjo and Atiku Abubakar, his vice president, ruled Nigeria between 1999 and 2007. Within their two terms, it was in 2001 that the economy experienced an ascending inflation rate of 18.87%, with an 11.94% annual rate increase.  

Presently, the country’s inflation rate at the end of December 2022  is 21.34, dropping a little and terminating a 17-year rate increase of the previous month.

An inquiry into macro trends gave the analytical list of the inflation rates in Nigeria since her independence in 1960. A closer study of the statistical information revealed that since Nigeria became a sovereign state, the country witnessed the highest inflation rate in 1995, at a critical mark of 72.84%, with an annual increase rate of 15.80% in the previous year.

A screenshot of the inflation rates charts by Macrotrends.

Also, WorldData info presents a corresponding report about inflation rates in Nigeria, in comparison with the United States and Europe. In the report, 1995 is also recorded as having the highest inflation rate, 72.84%, and the only one in the country’s history.

A screenshot of Inflation rates compared to the US and Europe by


Mr Keyamo’s assertion is wrong. In the history of inflation rates in Nigeria, 1995 witnessed the highest rate of inflation, which was four years before former president Olusegun Obasanjo took over power as president of Nigeria.

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