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UN says 70% of people in Buhari’s state live below poverty line

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A report by the United Nations Humanitarian Commission says over 70 per cent of people in Katsina, the home state of President Muhammadu Buhari, are living below the poverty line.

The report of the agency was made known on Tuesday by the Resident Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, Mathias Schmale, after a visit to the state Governor, Aminu Masari, in Katsina.

While addressing Masari, Schmale said the situation had become worrisome as most of the most vulnerable were women and children.

“We understand that poverty, insecurity and lack of knowledge are also key factors that are contributing to malnutrition among children in the state,” Schmale said.

“I said to my colleagues that I want to get first-hand information so that people will not bamboozle me with statistics and arguments. I can say I have seen it myself.

“At our next meeting of the humanitarian country team this coming Wednesday, we will discuss humanitarian issues in the rest of the country, not just in the North-East.

“What I have been educated on today is the drivers of this crisis in your state are a mixture of three factors, one is insecurity, another one is poverty.”

While responding to the UN chief, Masari attributed the malnutrition crisis to some cultural issues.

Read also: More Nigerians fall into poverty bracket as W/Bank raises poverty line to $2.15

“The same problem is happening in most of the northern states. A family of 10 some 20 years back had only one hectare of land for cultivation

“But because of culture, this family in 10 years can become a family of 100, living on the same source.

“How can we address the issue in a fundamental way? The main driver of poverty is a lack of education and skills. The intervention we need in order to address poverty has to do with education that would give people knowledge and the skills so that production can rise, and people can look after themselves,” the governor said.

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