Thursday, February 25, 2010

Little changes -Little change

Socialist Banner reads

Every government claims to be in place for the purpose of making life more pleasant for its people, through poverty alleviation or eradication programmes. But government after government has consistently failed to truly alleviate the poverty of the masses.Despite the enormous wealth of Nigeria , poverty still has a strong grip on a large chunk of the populace. It shows that the anti-poverty programmes have largely failed.Every year, huge sums are appropriated for the purpose of fighting poverty yet, the malaise still manages to widen its reach on the Nigerian people

Rating agencies have continued to show that the indices of poverty in Nigeria are even worsening, with over seventy per cent of the population said to be living below poverty lines-living on less than a dollar a day. With many still having great difficulty affording three square meals a day, or unable to attend to health challenges, or even a decent accommodation, the Human Development Index (HDI) of Nigerians is bound to be low. Rather than improving, the poverty level of Nigerians is rather increasing. One thing that this shows is that all claims to poverty alleviation in the country are sheer sloganeering.

Bodies like the Ministry of Social Development and Welfare, which used to impart skills on the populace, are no longer visible. The National Directorate of Employment (NDE) which ought to train school leavers in various skills to enable them be self-employed and self sufficient has not been empowered to play its role. The NDE, over the years has been starved of funds to carry out its functions. Anti-poverty projects and programmes have consistently failed to achieve their goals.

Aside from the obvious fact that extreme poverty engenders widespread hunger, malnutrition, lack of clean water, death from easily preventable diseases, lack of access to healthcare, inadequate shelter, illiteracy and general lack of education, the poor also suffer from a plethora of other, less obvious inequalities. They have no influence decisions which affect their lives and livelihoods. They have no bargaining power. They have no lobbyists. They have no importance alongside corporations. They are there to be ignored, discounted.

The marginalisation of the masses is no accident, no simple mistake or miscalculation but an inevitable consequence of the deliberate policy of those who hold the power; those whose aim is to accumulate more and more of the land, resources, wealth of any kind or just money, because this is what the capitalist system from which they benefit requires of them and deliberate policy, too, of those in governments who do their utmost to assist, sometimes in the hope of gaining a few steps on the ladder. Those at the top has no will to fix the system except to their own advantage .

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