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Press Release Issued By The Board of Trustees of ActionAid Nigeria On The State Of The Nation

Text of a Press Release Issued by the Board of Trustees of ActionAid Nigeria, after a virtual meeting to review the State Of the Nation on the 27th day of March 2021.

The Board of Trustees of ActionAid Nigeria following its 43rd meeting held virtually has deemed it fit as citizens of the nation and as active agents of change to make the following comments, observations, and recommendations on the State of the Nation.

While we recognise the efforts by the current administration to move the country forward, particularly at an unprecedented time when the world is battling a pandemic, our observations are as follow:


  1. Negative myths about the AstraZeneca/Oxford COVID-19 vaccines have continued to thrive. The call for registration for vaccination has been met with mixed reactions. some Nigerians are still unaware of COVID-19 vaccination despite the online registration portal, and house to house registration for administration of the doses of the vaccine set up by the Federal Government of Nigeria.

  2. Kidnapping, especially of school children is gradually becoming a norm in the country as insecurity is still on the rise, with many records of banditry, insurgency and killings, especially in the North West, North East and North Central Nigeria.The rising cases of abduction of school children is alarming and will further disparage stakeholders’ efforts at reducing the rate of out-of-school children in Nigeria, particularly, the girl-child. Schools are now seemingly unsafe for girls and give parents undue justification to force their girl-child into early marriage.

  3. Tackling poverty requires a multidimensional approach and considerations. Implementing interventionist programs to reduce poverty is difficult when violence is on the rise across Nigeria. In addition, poverty alleviation schemes put in place by the government have been rendered ineffective largely due to corruption, uneven distribution, and lack of accountability.

  4. While other African countries spend an average of 17% of their revenue on debt servicing, Nigeria is currently servicing debts with 50% of its revenue. Despite the huge borrowings, there are not enough infrastructure to show for it as many Nigerians remain in abject poverty. Healthcare system is sub-standard, no stable electricity, and the state of most Nigerian roads are still deplorable.

  5. The role of the LGAs as the third tier of government in the Nigerian 1999 constitution includes provision of infrastructural developments at the grassroots. Yet, state governments have continued to usurp the powers and functions attributed to the local governments and only acknowledge them as a subunit of the state with no autonomy.


  1. ActionAid Nigeria Board of Trustees recommends that the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) should ensure that its multifaceted approach to registration & administration of the COVID19 vaccine be inclusive, recognising citizens in excluded communities; whilst the National Orientation Agency works with other stakeholders to eliminate perceived myths about the COVID19 vaccine.

  2. We recommend the overhauling and restructuring of the nation's security architecture to create real changes in such areas as funding, equipment, accountability and boosting the morale of the men in the field among others. Also, community ownership is key to winning the battle against insecurity as evidenced by ActionAid Nigeria Community Action Response Teams (CARTs) piloted in 24 communities in Kogi and Nasarawa states.

  3. To reduce poverty, governments at all levels should prioritise policies relevant to specific communities; COVID-19, conflicts and climate crisis should be carefully considered to successfully reduce poverty in Nigeria. Anti-corruption rhetorics should be matched with action. We call on the federal government, anti-corruption agencies to ensure the implementation of emergency fund management protocols and bring defaulters to book.

  4. We admonish Federal and State Governments to expedite actions to make local government councils autonomous to fast-track rural development, strengthen agriculture, create employment, and reduce rural-urban migration.

  5. To reduce Nigeria’s debt profile, the government must urgently close all leakages along the revenue collection value chain, swiftly reduce the cost of governance at all levels of the polity and expedite the process of diversifying the economy.



Editors' notes

ActionAid Nigeria is a national non-governmental, non-partisan, non-religious, civil society organisation, and an affiliate member of the ActionAid International Federation with presence in 45 countries. It works in solidarity with people living in poverty and exclusion to achieve social justice, gender equality and poverty eradication towards achieving a just, equitable and sustainable world in which every person enjoys the right to a life of dignity, freedom from poverty and all forms of oppression.


CONTACT - Lola Ayanda - Communications Coordinator - ActionAid Nigeria | Tel: +234(0)8099101428

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