Bill Gates suggests What Nigeria can do to come out of poverty
NEWSMAN, Abuja – Microsoft co-founder, and billionaire businessman, Bill Gates has given possible steps that will help lift Nigerians out of poverty.
The famous philanthropist in an interview with The Cable identified improved primary healthcare, quality education, higher taxes amongst others as means to reduce the poverty rate in Nigeria.
“There are many aspects of poverty reduction. The most immediate is health; you know, if kids are surviving, they are able to be educated and be more productive, if you’re getting rid of malnutrition, both physical and mental capacity of the country is greatly increased. I’d still put primary healthcare at the top; then you have the quality of education, the quality of infrastructure, things like stability, and the court systems working well,” Gates said.
Gates said Nigeria has about the lowest domestic tax collection of any country in the world, so it is very tough to fund infrastructure and education, adding that “Nigerians don’t trust that their tax money is well spent and so it is important to build credibility so that over time, the tax collection can be much higher,” Vanguard reported.
He further advised that Nigerians need to overcome the feeling of questioning if the taxes collected will be channeled towards the right thing, adding that “one area that you can really show that very clearly is by having the health supplies there, having the health workers show up, be clear what those health goals are, then people will very quickly see lives saved”
“Our deepest expertise is in this health area because that is just a critical area that still lags behind, particularly in the north even behind countries that are substantially less wealthy,” he said.
Bill Gates together with his wife Melinda Ann Gates own the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, a charitable organization that works with government, the private sector, and civil society to help people lift themselves out of poverty. The foundation sets out to Eradicate polio, Strengthen healthcare systems, Increase agricultural productivity, Enhance access to financial services among other things.