As a means to tackle the rise in the poverty rate of Nigeria, a Don, Dr Ovat Oyama has called on the Federal Government to encourage more Nigerians to venture into entrepreneurship as a way to tackle the rate of poverty in the country.
Oyama, who lectures Economics at the University of Calabar, Cross River, told pressmen in Lagos that the number of Nigerians living in poverty was alarming.
According to him, becoming entrepreneurs will be the antidote to the challenge. The era of expecting to get government employment to change one’s economic status is over.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has negatively impacted the nation’s economy with anticipated job losses.
“This is as the projected downturn in the economy is being aggravated by the decline of crude oil in the global market,’’ he said.
On some possible areas to venture into, he told NAN that the FG should encourage more Nigerians to go into the information and technology space to mitigate the poverty standing.
“Our youth can change their economic status through harnessing the immense potential in the digital space.
“Countries with large population such as India, China and Pakistani have exploited it, and ours cannot be an exception,’’ he said.
Recall that the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), in the executive summary of the 2019 poverty and inequality report released on May 4, 2020, said that over 82.9 million Nigerians lived below its poverty line.
”In Nigeria, 40.1 per cent of the total population was classified as poor. In other words, on average, four out of 10 individuals in Nigeria have real per capita expenditures below N137,430 per year,’’ the NBS said.
The bureau said that between September 2018 and October 2019, it conducted the latest round of the Nigerian Living Standards Survey after 10 years.
The NLSS is the official survey that is the basis for measuring poverty and living standards.