The immediate past Governor of Osun State, Rauf Aregbesola, has said that Nigeria needs birth control to check her population, if the country must avert the “huge problems” that lie ahead.
Aregbesola said this while speaking at a symposium to mark the Golden Jubilee celebration of Hon. Abdulahi Ayinde Enilolobo, a chieftain of the All Progressive Congress.
Aregbesola, who was making a connection between Nigeria’s growing population and her lean resources, said that Nigeria ought to set a day aside for weeping, if the people remember they are poor and have a deep sense of understanding of the enormity of the problems ahead.
He said: “We don’t remember that we are poor here in Nigeria. If we have a deep thought, we ought to have a day of weeping every month.”
Aregbesola compared Nigeria with Brazil in terms of similarity in population size but huge differences in revenue. According to Aregbesola, while Nigeria earned a paltry US$13 billion in revenue in 2017, Brazil gulped in about 46 times that amount, raking in US$ 600 billion in revenue in the same year.
Aregbesola believes that such disparity in population and earnings for the country can limit her growth.
“If we don’t work harder to improve our fortunes, we would continue to be poor. In 2017, Brazil had a population of approximately 200 million people almost about what Nigeria had. That year, Brazil had a revenue of about $600 billion and a budget of $700 billion. Nigeria in that same year made $13 billion and a budget of $23 billion. Are the two countries equal?
Today, OPEC allowed Nigeria to extract and sell 2million barrel of crude oil per day but we don’t get that quantity. Even if we get 2million barrel per day and if the price rises to $100 per barrel, it means our income will be $200 million.”
Aregbesola said that it is important that Nigeria take a very critical step to check her population, if the country must make progress and avert future problems.
Here is his conclusion:
“If you divide this by 200 million people, it amounts to $1 per every Nigerian. We have to check our population by practicing birth control. If we don’t address this, we would have huge problems to deal with. We would also need every able-bodied person to work.”