Showing posts with label Poverty. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Poverty. Show all posts

Thursday, September 30, 2010

As Nigeria celebrates its 50th year of independence, Lets Remember

As we mark the 50th Independence Anniversary of Nigeria, let us remember the over 80 million poverty stricken Nigerians who live from hand to mouth. The cheated, deprived and ravaged masses in the rural areas from the Niger Delta to Lake Chad. Let us remember them as we dine and wine in our palatial mansions on Banana Island and Asokoro and as we cruise about in our posh cars and luxury SUVs in our romantic jolly ride of the Golden Jubilee.

For these defenceless victims of the Machiavellian political contractors and their greedy collaborators cannot even read and write and they survive on less than a dollar a day.

Poverty ravages majority of Nigerians in the rural areas. Photo Credit: Stolen Childhood

Let us remember that the families and relations of the 15 school children who were kidnapped last Monday are still gripped by the fears of the fate of their missing children and shedding tears, trickling down to their palms as they bow down on their knees in prayers for the safety of their innocent children.

Let us remember the tens of thousands murdered in extra judicial killings at Nigerian police checkpoints and illegal toll-gates and in the hellish cells of police stations.

Let us remember the abandoned patients in the public hospitals where the doctors have been on strike and where lives have been lost, because nobody cares for them.

Let us remember those who have been killed in ghastly auto accidents on the abandoned roads in Nigeria.

Let us remember the unsung heroes of political conflicts who lost their precious lives in political protests, ethnic-religious riots and in unusual circumstances at different locations in the north, south, west and east of Nigeria, our beloved nation.

Let us remember...lest we forget.

God save Nigeria

~ By Ekenyerengozi Michael Chima

Nigeria 50 years of Independence

30 Sep 2010 12:53 Africa/Lagos

Nigeria 50 years of Independence

ABUJA, September 30, 2010/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- Interview opportunity

“Because of oil exploration there are no more fisheries…We experience the hell of hunger and poverty. Plants and animals do not grow well, the fish have died…”
- Jonah Gbemre of Delta State, April 2008

Nigeria celebrates its 50th year of independence on October 1.

Since the 1960s, oil has generated an estimated $600 billion. Despite this, the majority of the Niger Delta's population lives in poverty. According to the UN, the area suffers from administrative neglect, crumbling social infrastructure and services, high unemployment, social deprivation, abject poverty, filth, squalor and endemic conflict.

This poverty, and its contrast with the wealth generated by oil, has become one of the world's starkest and most disturbing examples of the “resource curse”.

Amnesty International has spokespeople available to discuss the impact of the oil industry on the human rights situation in Nigeria in the past 50 years.

We can also provide interviews on the use of torture and extra-judicial killings by security forces, the death penalty and housing rights/forced evictions over the past 50 years.

For further information, photos or to arrange an interview by ISDN or phone please contact Katy Pownall on +44 (0)207 413 5729 or email

Source: Amnesty International

Releases displayed in Africa/Lagos time
30 Sep 2010
12:53Nigeria 50 years of Independence
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29 Sep 2010
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Saturday, May 1, 2010

Majority of Nigerian Workers Are Suffering on May Day

A Nigerian worker, the hero of May Day

Every May 1 is May Day, a holiday for workers all over the world to celebrate the dignity of labor and their achievements as white collars or blue collars. But majority of the workers in Nigeria have nothing to celebrate. In Lagos, the government workers are lamenting the woes of poor wages and the high cost of living caused by unchecked inflation and insecurity in the most populous city in West Africa.

In Lagos state, low income workers are among the most grossly underpaid workers in Nigeria. Their meager salaries or what I call starvation wages cannot even afford three square meals for a single person. The same poor wage from which an employee must pay house rent and other bills in the most expensive place to live in Nigeria.

The minimum wage in Nigeria is one of the lowest in Africa.
How can an adult live on a salary of N7, 000 – N10, 000 monthly when he or she needs about N500 for average three square meals daily?

The high cost of living in Lagos makes it impossible for anyone to even eat three square meals on a monthly salary of N10, 000. I have seen many secondary school leavers earning nothing more than N5, 000 monthly salaries!

Nigeria has the worst wage discrepancies I have ever seen in the world. These wage discrepancies are making majority of the most populous country in Africa poorer by the day. And poverty is the major cause of rebellion against the state as shown by horrifying and terrifying cases of rising crime, prostitution and other anti-social vices since there is no form of social security for the citizens.

There is no scholarship or social welfare for brilliant children of poor employees. So when their poor wages cannot be enough to pay the school fees of their children, they drop out and they simply send them to learn a trade. You see thousands of children and young adults who are hawking on the street or selling in the market when their mates from comfortable families are going to school. So, in most cases, the poor children of the poor workers cannot have good education and end up at the bottom of the social hierarchy where their parents were. The poor get poorer while the rich get richer as the children of high income earners end up going to better schools to have a better education that would guarantee better jobs and better wages. So, the vicious circle continues and perpetuation of social class disparities worsens the predicament of the poor.

The underpaid workers see the well paid or overpaid Nigerians as their oppressors and enemies of their progress. These glaring discrepancies and disparities have pitched the poor against the rich. That is why the get-rich-quick syndrome is gripping the poor. Frustration leads to desperation, because the indignities of poverty make them to have low esteem.

Better wages and social welfare benefits will improve the lives of the poor low income workers and eventually reduce criminal and vicious activities.

Those who ignore the needs of the poor do so at their own peril.

The minimum wage in Nigeria should not be less than N50, 000. Because, anything less than N50, 000 is nothing short of starvation wage.

Every worker should be well paid to enable him or her to provide for the family where the person is the sole bread winner. Social welfare and scholarships should be provided for the children of the poor wage earners so that their children will not end up as poor as their parents.

~ Ekenyerengozi Michael Chima

Monday, March 29, 2010

Join 100,000 Voices To Fight Poverty, Protect Human Rights, and Demand Transparency

Demand Financial Transparency

Tell the G20 to Create Financial Transparency
Join 100,000 voices to fight poverty, protect human rights, and demand transparency.
Developing countries are currently losing US$1 trillion dollars annually - 10 times the amount they receive in foreign aid. We can change this. Tell the G20 - the world's economic leaders - to create transparency in the international financial system.

Please, sign the petition below.

G20 Transparency Petition

Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services…
--Article 25 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Research shows that developing countries are losing $1 trillion every year due to crime, government corruption, and tax evasion. These illicit monetary outflows are roughly ten times the amount of aid money going into developing countries for poverty alleviation and economic development.

The loss of money from poor economies that would otherwise go to provide health services, infrastructure, and other critical needs exacerbates poverty and leads to the deaths of millions of people. The annual loss of hundreds of billions of dollars from the world’s poorest and most vulnerable economies constitutes one of the most pressing human rights issues of the new decade.

The key to tackling this problem is transparency in the global financial system. After these stolen or otherwise ill-gotten gains exit their country of origin they vanish into an opaque financial system comprised of tax havens and secrecy jurisdictions. The most effective deterrent to criminals, corrupt officials, and tax evaders is to create a global financial system where illicit money cannot hide.
When the world’s 20 largest economies – the G20 – meet in Toronto on June 26-27, 2010 they will have an unprecedented opportunity to institute changes to create a transparent global financial system that is open, accountable, fair and beneficial for all.

Toward that end, we call on the G20 leaders to:

• • Recognize the link between illicit outflows of capital from developing countries, absorption of those resources by tax havens and secrecy jurisdictions, and the adverse impact those flows have on poverty alleviation and economic development.

• • Call on the Financial Action Task Force to amend its recommendations 33, 34, and VIII to provide that the beneficial ownership of all companies, trusts, foundations and charities be made a matter of public record.

• • Instruct the International Accounting Standards Board to recommend that all multinational corporations report their income and taxes paid on a country by country basis.”

GFI recently launched the G20 Transparency campaign to enable people around the world to take action on the problem of illicit financial flows. To sign the G20 transparency petition, which will be presented at the G20 meetings in June, go to or visit

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Children International Stands Up & Takes Action with the United Nations to Help Fight Poverty

Children International Stands Up & Takes Action with the United Nations to Help Fight Poverty

WASHINGTON, D.C. (October 15, 2009) /PRNewswire/ — Children International joins the United Nations’ campaign to fight poverty one child at a time!

The U.S.-based humanitarian organization, which helps poor children around the world, invites you to observe the fourth annual “Stand Up & Take Action” event October 16-18 by supporting the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals to end hunger and poverty.

Nearly 300,000 Children International contributors have stood up and taken action every month by pledging their constant financial and emotional support of one child living in desperate poverty. In 2008, 116 million people took part in United Nations’ Stand Up & Take Action events around the world.

In response to the global food crisis and skyrocketing food prices, Children International has established a new Emergency Lifeline Food Program in 2008 which provides badly-needed food to poor children and their families whose constant fight against poverty leaves them hungry and malnourished. The Emergency Lifeline Food Program provides vitamins, enriched food and nutrition education to children and their parents in local community centers in 11 countries around the world. In the first half of this year, Children International provided food and nutrients to more than 17,000 children through their nutritional rehabilitation program.

This year, millions of participants plan to commemorate the event by organizing tree-plantings, music vigils and blood drives.

Children International’s President and CEO Jim Cook said, “Children International works every day to support the United Nations’ goals to end global poverty by lifting poor children out of crushing poverty. By partnering with Stand Up & Take Action, we will make a difference in the lives of poor children around the world.”

To learn more about how to help relieve poverty one child at a time, visit Children International.

To learn more about other events taking place around the world, visit Stand Against Poverty.

About Children International:
Established in 1936, Children International is a nonprofit organization with its headquarters in Kansas City, Missouri. Children International’s programs benefit more than 325,000 sponsored children and their families in 11 countries around the world including Chile, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guatemala, Mexico, Zambia, Honduras, India, the Philippines and the United States. For more information about Children International, visit

Press Contact:
Dolores Quinn Kitchin
Public Relations
Children International
Direct: (816) 943-3730
Cell: (816) 718-0711

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