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Poverty, underdevelopment responsible for failure of democracy in West Africa – Sam Amadi

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The director of the Abuja School of Social and Political Thought, Sam Amadi, has revealed that poverty and underdevelopment are the banes of democracy in West Africa.

Amadi, a former chairman of the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Agency, NERC, stated this while reacting to the exit of Burkina Faso, Niger Republic and Mali from the Economic Commission of West African States, ECOWAS.

DAILY POST reports that Mali, Burkina Faso, and Niger Republic had some days ago, announced their immediate withdrawal from ECOWAS.

However, speaking at a press conference organised by the School and the Save Democracy Group West Africa in Abuja on Tuesday, Amadi noted that the panacea to West Africa’s problem is curbing poverty and salvaging the dwindling economic situation.

“For us, we consider the travail of the democracy group in West Africa serious because of three factors; West African is probably the poorest part of the world. Most of the poorest countries in the world are coming from West Africa.

“Secondly, it is one of the most terrorised and fragile states. Look at the Sahel, which is where some of these countries are, Mali, Niger, Burkina Faso. If you look at the Gulf of Guinea, it is also troubled – ISWAP, Boko Haram. It is really a fragile region.

“If you factor in the high poverty rate and underdevelopment as seen in the GDP of West African states, they are very depressed.

“Democracy failure in West Africa is the failure of development and human wealth. We are worried as a school; this is a serious challenge to the sustainability of livelihoods in West Africa, and not to spite the Nigerian government.

“So these triple actions—rising poverty, rising fragility and violence, and of course, economic stagnation—should be places to focus.”

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