NewsReel 20/3/15 - Nigeria: Creating value

[ Masterweb Reports: Ann Sylvester Nwufo reports ] - Despite the vast resources in Nigeria, She faces a high level of inequality. The gap between the have’s and the have not is growing wider by the day considering its Gross National Income (GNI), human assets (classification based on indicators like nutrition, health, education, adult literacy) and Economic vulnerability (stability or instability of agricultural products, export of goods and services) among other countries designated developing, but most people are unconcerned. Whereas the rich fret about the way the economic pie is divided, nevertheless every Nigerian want to join the rich, not soak them. A country is categorized rich or poor based on the calculation made on poverty line of its nationals bearing in mind that the poverty line threshold varies from one country to another according to World Bank.


The exact size of that gap depends on how you measure it. Look at wages, the main source of income for most people, and you understate the importance of health care and other benefits. Look at household income and you need to take into account that the typical household has fallen in size in recent decades.


Look at statistics on spending and you find that the gaps between top and bottom have widened the more. Look at the abuse by those in power, institutions disempowerment, excluded locations, gender relationships, lack of security, limited physical capabilities. But every measure shows that, over the past years, those at the top have done better than those in the middle, who in turn have outpaced those at the bottom. Whichever explanation you choose for the signs of growing economic inequality, poverty and wealth can be measured, statistically.


Human Development Index (HDI)


Human development index is about allowing people to leave the kind of life they choose or value, expand their choices and providing them with the tools and opportunities to make those choices. It is about creating an environment in which people can develop their full potential and leave productively, creating lives in accord with their needs and interests.


Educated people are the real wealth of a nation.

Fundamental to enlarging this pie, is building human capabilities, the range of things that people can do or be in life. The most basic capabilities for human development are the combining major indicators to calculate index according to the United Nations. The indicators include:


  • Life expectancy for healthy lives

  • Knowledge ability

  • Access to the resources needed for a decent standard of living and to be able to participate in the life of developing the community.

The HDI makes it possible to track changes in development levels over time and to compare development levels in different countries as it combines all major social and economic indicators that are responsible for economic development. The United Nation further points out that the HDI accounts for more than income and productivity, unlike Gross Domestic Production (GDP) per capita or per capita income. HDI takes into account how income is turned into education and health opportunities and therefore into higher levels of human development. Every year UNDP ranks countries growth based on calculated HDI released in their annual report.


Nigeria’s HDI value and rank


Nigeria’s HDI value for 2012 is 0.471, in the low human development category, positioning the country at 153 out of 187 countries and territories. Between 2005 and 2012, Nigeria’s HDI value increased from 0.434 to 0.471, an increase of 9 percent or average annual increase of about 1.2 percent. The rank of Nigeria’s HDI for 2011 based on data available in 2012 and methods used in 2012 was 154 out of 187 countries. In the 2011 Human Development Report, Nigeria was ranked 156 out of 187 countries. Life expectancy in Nigeria is placed at 52 years old while other health indicators reveal that only 1.9 per cent of the nation’s budget is expended on health.


For further details on how each index is calculated please refer to Technical Notes 1-4 and the associated background papers available on the Human Development Report website.


It is economically said that Nigeria’s economy is robust and resilient, but the big question is, what is the future of a Nigerian student?


We can create value or expand the size of the pie by finding joint gain, a common and conflicting interest that can improve our individual lives, and not apportioning blames.


Creativity or creating value can expand the size of the pie in contention.


Value creators see the essence of human development and capacity building as expanding the pie, while value claimers on the other hand tend to see this drive for joint gain (common and conflicting interest) as the governments obligation. An essential tension exists between cooperative moves of creating value and competitive move of claiming value, but they are linked parts of achieving our dreams. Value that has been created must be claimed, and if the pie is not enlarged, there will be less pie to divide. There will be more value to be claimed if someone has helped create it first. I hereby call on every Nigerian student or youth to concentrate more on creating value thereby enlarging the pie.



Ann Sylvester Nwufo ( Email: ), Peace Educator at Silvercee for Peace Movement, Bangkok, Thailand reports..


*Photo Caption - Map of Nigeria

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