Former Minister of Education, Oby Ezekwesili has advised Nigerians to work towards getting themselves out if poverty because the government doesn’t have what it takes to deliver them.
She made this known while speaking at an event in Ikeja on June 12 organized to celebrate rate MKO Abiola which was attended by Shehu Sani, Pat Utomi, Mike Ogini, Muhammad Fawehinmi and others.
Oby Ezekwesili said:
“What was the rate of poverty when Chief MKO Abiola enunciated a manifesto that talked about farewell to poverty ? What you can see clearly from the indicators is that poverty has increased . What has happened between 1993 and now is that Nigeria has overtaken India , a nation that is about six times its population , by having the largest number of extremely poor people in its population . Today, according to the world poverty map , we have some 93 million extremely poor people among us.
“If you have 93 million people living in poverty , then it means that you must focus the government on them . But what has happened is that the political class has monopolised the political and governance space and taken absolute control , excluding the citizens for whom the democracy should be for. The political class has weaponised poverty as an instrument of perpetual control .
“Unfortunately , some of the 93 million people don ’ t vote and when they have the power to vote , they don ’ t clearly know how to exercise that vote in their own interest . What do you then do when the excluded have a way of conspiring with a system that has excluded them to entrench the exclusion ?”