HomeBusiness & EconomyRising Cost Of Living May Lead To Social Unrest, Others - AFDB

Rising Cost Of Living May Lead To Social Unrest, Others – AFDB

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has raised an alarm that rising prices of fuel and other commodities could lead to social unrest in Nigeria, Ethiopia, Angola and Kenya.

The AfDB sounded the warning in its macroeconomic performance and outlook for 2024 in which it projected Africa’s economy to grow higher than the 3.2 per cent recorded in 2023.

The AfDB projected that growth on the continent will rebound to 3.8% in 2024.

However, the bank cautioned that an increase in fuel and commodity prices occasioned by currency depreciation or subsidy removal in Nigeria, Angola, Kenya and Ethiopia could trigger internal conflicts.

It stated, “Internal conflicts and violence could also result from rising prices for fuel and other commodities due to weaker domestic currencies and reforms.

“For instance, the removal of fuel subsidies in Angola, Ethiopia, Kenya and Nigeria and the resulting social costs has led to social unrest driven by opposition to government policy.”

Also, the AfDB said the rise of geopolitical tensions in Eastern Europe and the Middle East in addition with the El Nino phenomenon, may trigger supply chain disruptions, which could aggravate energy and food inflation across the world with Africa more vulnerable to these shocks.

Rising cost of living has become something to worry about in Nigeria with some Nigerians hitting the streets of some states in recent times in protest.

The cost of living crisis is blamed on the federal government’s policies of the petrol subsidy removal and floating of the naira.

The protest over increasing hardship started in Minna, Niger State on February 5, with many other states holding similar protests after.

Some prominent personalities have started speaking up and warning that if the current situation is not quickly nipped in the bud, things could deteriorate.

One of those individuals was the Sultan of Sokoto, who recently said that the economic hardship in Nigeria had reached a level where citizens were agitated, angry, and hungry.

He specifically warned the Federal Government that the hardship, insecurity, poverty, and unemployment in Nigeria and the North, in particular, was getting to a level where they could no longer pacify the people from revolting.

“To make matters worse, we are faced with the rising level of poverty amongst our people, lack of normal sources of livelihood for the common man to have even if it is one good meal a day.

“I believe talking of insecurity and the rising level of poverty are two issues that we cannot fold our arms and think everything is okay. I have said it so many times and at so many fora that things are not okay in Nigeria and of course, things are not okay in the North,” he said.

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has also scheduleda two-day nationwide protest over the hardship being experienced by Nigerians as well as the deteriorating security situation in the country.

Speaking in a press conference after an emergency meeting of the National Executive Council (NEC) of the union on Friday, the NLC President, Joe Ajaero, said the protest will begin a week after the expiration of the 14 day ultimatum it issued to the Federal Government which will expire on February 23.

The planned days for the nationwide protest are February 27 and 28.


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