Research Document: NESG 2021 Multidimensional Poverty Alert, November 2022

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Posted Sat, Nov 19, 2022 9:57 PM

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About 63 percent of Nigerians are Multidimensionally Poor as of 2021

According to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), about 133 million Nigerians suffer from multidimensional poverty, corresponding to a 63 percent poverty headcount as of 2021. This implies that approximately 6 out of 10 Nigerians are multidimensionally poor. Moreover, the national multidimensional poverty index (MPI) was estimated at 0.257 in 2021. This suggests that poor Nigerians experience about 26 percent of all possible deprivations, including lack of access to basic social services –health and education, poor living standards, unfavorable labor market outcomes, and security shocks (see Figure 1).

In terms of monetary deprivation, the national poverty headcount was estimated at 40.9 percent in 2021, slightly higher than the 2019 estimate of 40.1 percent. A further breakdown of the poverty statistics showed that the incidence of multidimensional poverty is significantly higher in rural settlements (72 percent) than in urban centers (42 percent), with corresponding MPI estimated at 0.302 and 0.155, respectively, as of 2021. Similarly, about 41.9 percent and 36.9 percent of Nigerians residing in the rural and urban settlements, respectively, fell below the national monetary poverty line of 2021.

Northern Region remains Nigeria’s Poverty Capital

There is wide variation in the incidence of multidimensional poverty across the six geo-political zones in Nigeria. Meanwhile, the Northern region has a significant headcount of multidimensionally poor Nigerians (65 percent) relative to the Southern region, with a poverty incidence of 35 percent as of 2021. At 76.5 percent, North East had the highest incidence of multidimensional poverty, followed by the North West (75.8 percent)as of 2021(seeFigure2). On the other hand, South West had the lowest multidimensional poverty incidence at 40 percent, followed by South East (49 percent)as of 2021. In addition, the northern zones outpaced their Southern counterparts in terms of other poverty indices –the multidimensional poverty index and average monetary deprivation rate as of 2021

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