THE National Bureau of Statics NBS recently released the poverty index in the nation rating Ondo State as having the least number of poor people in the country who suffer all possible deprivations with Multidimensional Poverty Index score of 0.095.
THIS MPI score indicates that poor people in the state suffer just 9.5 percent of all possible deprivations compared with 25.7 percent for Nigeria as a whole.
POVERTY levels across States vary significantly. In terms of multidimensional poverty, in Ondo, Lagos and Abia, less than 30% of the population are multi-dimensionally poor; in Sokoto 91% of the population are. In a federal system, the level of MPI by State is vitally important, because each State government can use the MPI to guide poverty strategies and assess its performance on poverty reduction.
NO DOUBT, the low poverty incidence in Ondo State is a testimony that Governor Akeredolu’s targeted plans, matched to the sustainable development goals, are improving the economy and reducing poverty in the state considering the parameters used by the National Bureau of Statics, NBS, for its rating.
ACCORDING to the report, the parameters used to arrive at this result include; health, living standard, education, security and unemployment.
A close appraisal of Akeredolu’s exploits in this regards by a common man will state the obvious that the report of NBS is accurate and not doctored.
FOR instance in the health sector, the administration’s exploit is glaring. Recently, 36 graduate nurses who were awarded the Bachelor of Nursing Science (BNSc) degrees from the University of Medical Sciences (UNIMED), recorded 100 percent success in their national examination, revealed the high flying performance of the two state-owned institutions were among the top 10 in the recent NUC rankings.
MOREOVER, Pharmacy Technician course in the state College of Health Technology, Akure, was recently granted full accreditation of five years after meeting the acceptable levels of quality pre-requisite set by Pharmacists Council of Nigeria (PCN). The students recorded 100 percent success in the national examination, all these are as a result of Akeredolu’s favorable policies in the health sector.
IN the same vein, UNIMED emerged fourth in the National University Commission (NUC) ranking as one of the best 10 state-owned universities in the country.
ON employment, the state has continued to record impressive and an impeccable record, projects such as the Oil Palm, Red Gold initiatives have created over 5,000 jobs; Ondo-Linyi Industrial Park in Ore created over 2,000 jobs; the afforestation revitalization scheme generated over a thousand jobs, are all attestations to the general improvement in the quality of lives of the people.
IT is known to all and sundry that Ondo State is the most secured compared to all other states in the south west and Akeredolu’s investment on the Amotekun Corps is highly commendable and rewarding to the citizens.
ALL these are attestation to the fact that NBS’ rating was done based on fact. As much as we commend the government and the people of Ondo on this great achievement, we want the government to note that this was done with respect to other states and does not imply that the poor does not still exist in the State.
WE believe that the feat was achieved because the government had been proactive in investing in the state, but this rating is in relation to other states and does not translate to no poverty at all in Ondo State.
HENCE, we commend the government for what it has done in each of these areas and at the same time, urge the ‘talk and do Governor’ not to relent in making life more cosy and worth living for the citizens. The Hope salutes Governor Akeredolu for his tenacity and uncommon courage in making security top priority in Ondo State. His decision to clear outstanding salaries will certainly wean many people from the debt and crime bait prevalent across the society.
THE record of Ondo State is a reference to other States. It is an indication that other states can also do better if the leadership is willing to serve the people rather than be served. We urge other states in the federation to make poverty alleviation their priority. We particularly call on states still owing salaries to take a cue from Ondo State.