Nigerians are going through a difficult time in the history of the country.
The high cost of food in the market is giving many families a serious concern. A large percentage of Nigerians are affected. The middle class, and the poorest of the poor are writhing under the pain of the inclement economic weather. Despite having the largest economy and population in Africa, Nigeria offers limited opportunities to most of its citizens and as a result, makes the means of sustainability difficult which leads to the question: For how long?
Some Nigerians shared their thoughts on the state of the nation.
Imoh Daniel, general manager, AB Art World
The poor masses, in the situation the country has found itself, have always been at the receiving end. They tend to suffer the economic hardship more than every other class in the society as the cost of food for the common man (rice, beans, garri etc.) keeps going high on daily basis. The current economic situation tends to force many people into illegitimate ways of surviving the hard times. The number of beggars in the streets is a reflection of how bad things have become in the country.
Philomena Imoh, a business woman
The economic aspect of the country seems to be in a state of confusion and frustration as unimaginable inflation in the prices of commodities and services spike frequently, almost doubling rates on daily basis, thereby affecting the plans of both the rich and the poor. This must be checked by every means possible.
Michael Iheme: A student of Yaba College of Technology (Yabatech)
Living and thriving in our economy is not for the weak. The Nigerian economy is a sphere where it is almost impossible for an average citizen to survive independently. One can only succeed in this economy when one has someone or people who are available to provide support at extreme points of impoverishment.
Victor Veli: Employed graduate
The economy of Nigeria has forced many people to go low-profile. Only a few people nowadays afford luxurious life. People now spend on necessities rather than living lavishly. One possible way to survive now in the economy is to ‘cut one’s coat according to one’s size. Nigerians have suffered so much that they do not need to go through this harsh treatment. Government must provide conducive economic environment for the private sector to flourish and create more quality jobs for Nigerians. This suffering in Nigeria must stop.
Alice noble John: Corps member
Living in this hard economy, one has to cut down on one’s daily expenses. I wouldn’t really say ‘living’ because there’s clearly a whole lot of difference between living and surviving. Right now, there are limited employment opportunities; those employed have a fixed amount of salary as income as against the ever-rising cost of living evident in high cost of staples and basic needs. Profits for those who run their own businesses have also drastically reduced which also does not leave them better than those who earn monthly salary.
Udoh Ekemini Lucy: A graduate who also is an entrepreneur/fashion designer
The present state of the economy has called for serious adjustment. One has got to deliberately cut costs, live within one’s means, work harder, add more sources of income and also avoid trouble as much as possible. This is a period where one might have to suspend luxuries and just ensure survival by sourcing for daily upkeep. For instance, the luxurious dream of building an estate might have to wait until the economy gets a balance or better still, till one is able to adjust and absorb well enough the shockers the economy has brought on the citizens. So, in order to thrive in the current economic atmosphere, one needs to live a day at a time, stay out of debt, minimise cost and maximise profit, work smarter than harder, develop oneself with high value skills and source for opportunities ensuring to engage in activities that will add value to one’s income consistently. Have a plan and subsequent plans. If plan ‘A’ fails, there should be plan ‘B’, and other plans.
Adebayo Oluwabukola Mary: A youth corps member
The economy of Nigeria is not favourable to youths especially who have just two sources of income. How then do the ‘married’ and ‘parents’ cope considering they have more responsibilities? Trying to cope with the current economic situation has really affected a lot of plans for me. I run an online closet and I’m currently experiencing a drastic decline in my daily yields. One major cause of that is a general complaint laid by most of my customers – static income with increased daily expenses. Sometimes, I get tempted to quit but that idea seems to be a lot worse.
The new administration must move fast. It must work with stakeholders to develop an agenda for economic and social inclusion. At the heart of such an agenda must be improving the life of the average Nigerian. This agenda must also include a practical strategy on how to structurally transform the economy, moving labour and economic resources from low productivity to high productivity sectors.