Sokoto, Katsina, Bauchi, Yobe and Zamfara states are at the bottom of the National Human Development Index (HDI), according to the National Human Development Report 2018 released by the United Nations Development Programme which measured the situation as of 2016.
The HDI is a summary of the achievements in three basic areas of human development – a long and healthy life, access to knowledge and a decent standard of living.
According to the UNDP, the HDI represents a geometric average of normalised indices for each of the three dimensions of health, knowledge and standard of living.
The top performers, according to the report, are Lagos, the Federal Capital Territory Administration, Bayelsa, Akwa Ibom and Ekiti.
These were followed by Delta, Cross River, Ogun, Rivers, Abia, Enugu, Edo, Imo, Osun, Kwara, Nasarawa, Ondo, Anambra, Plateau, Benue, Taraba, Kogi, Oyo, Ebonyi, Adamawa, Kaduna, Gombe, Niger, Kebbi, Jigawa and Kano states.
With a value of 0.6515, Lagos outperformed all the other states. It also retained the title as it had placed first in the 2013 HDI with a value of 0.6716.
The FCT ranked second with a value of 0.6289. It jumped six places as it had placed seventh in the 2013 HDI, with a value of 0.5112.
With a value of 0.5909, Bayelsa placed third, stepping a place down from the second place it occupied in 2013, with a value of 0.621.
Akwa Ibom ranked fourth with a value of 0.5641. The state retained its placement as it had also occupied the fourth position in the previous index, with a value of 0.5698.
Ekiti, occupying the fifth position with a value 0.5608, was one of the highest performers in terms of ranking, as it moved 11 places by jumping from the 16th position it occupied in 2013 to the fifth in the latest ranking.
Among the least performers, Sokoto State moved a place backwards, occupying the 37th position, with a value of 0.2910 in the 2016 ranking and 36th position in the 2013 raking, with a value of 0.1942. This means that even though the state moved backwards in terms of raking, its value improved between the two time frames.
Katsina moved four places downwards to occupy the 36th position. However, it improved in its values as it had a value of 0.2364 in 2013 and a value of 0.3031 in the 2016 HDI.
Bauchi, with a value 0.3238, occupied the 35th position. It had occupied the 29th position in 2013 with a value of 0.2636. Yobe, on the other hand, occupied the 34th position with a value of 0.3249. In 2013, it occupied the 37th position with a value of 0.1247.
Borno occupied the 33rd position with a value of 0.3276; while in 2013, it occupied the 34th position, with a value of 0.2135.
The 32nd position was occupied by Zamfara, with a value of 0.3392 as against three years when it occupied the 30th position with a value of 0.2623.
The national average HDI stood at 0.5114, with 23 states falling below the national average. For the 2013 HDI, the national average stood at 0.5060.
The National Human Development Report 2018 focused on achieving human developing in the North-East.
At the presentation of the report in Abuja on Friday night, the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udo Udoma, said by addressing the economic and developmental issues in the North-East, the nation was helping to reduce the incidence of terrorism.
He stated, “This report focusing on the North-East confirms the view that the Boko Haram insurgency is partly as a result of the manipulation by religious extremists of some of the socio-economic and socio-cultural conditions of the North-East.
“In more specific terms, the report has confirmed a significant relationship between perceptions of exclusion, inequality, religious bigotry, loss of property, unemployment, resultant loss of livelihoods as well as perceptions of exclusion that extend to key sectors, including health, education and agriculture that have a significant nexus with the conflicts and violence in north east Nigeria.”