Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, on Monday said the country has not made progress in eradicating poverty because there was lack of “focused approach” by past administrations.
Speaking at an event to mark the 70th birthday of Abiola Ajimobi, a former governor of Oyo state, Osinbajo also said Nigeria is far behind in eradicating poverty because there was never a systematic approach to end it.
“It’s very obvious that we are behind the race in eradicating poverty. The reason being that before now, there were no systematic and focused approach to eradicating poverty in our country,” he said.
“This is why from 2014-2015, the APC decided to write social investment into our manifestos. So, the social investment we are talking about is not by accident. It’s a comprehensive programme to tackle poverty.
“It’s a detailed programme and the first of its kind anywhere in Africa. The programme is very seriously scrutinized by the World Bank and as a matter of fact, the World Bank is a collaborator.”
Also speaking at the event, Rauf Aregebesola, minister of interior, said in an effort to eradicate poverty, the rich must be taxed “mercilessly.”
The minister said there should also be a “rigorous” poverty alleviation programme in the country.
“My firm belief is that there must be transparency, rigorous poverty alleviation and anti-corruption programme,” he said.
“We must mercilessly tax the rich and the keyword is mercilessly. I mean those who are in possession of money either legitimately or through other means.”