Is Nigeria Really the WORST Country to be Born In? The Economist Intelligence Unit ranks Nigeria as No.80 out of 80 countries in its 2013 “Where-To-Be-Born Index”

Nigeria is known for many things, some good and admittedly, some really bad. In recent times, there have been a number of research reports completed by international organizations and the results have not be favourable for Nigeria.

In October 2012, the African Insurance Organisation ranked Nigeria as the “Kidnap for Ransom Capital of the World” accounting for 25% of Global Kidnappings. In June 2012, the Global Peace Index ranked Nigeria as the sixth most dangerous African country to live in.

Each time such results are released, it is usually followed by debates on various online platforms with many questioning the authenticity of the results.

Yesterday, the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), a sister company of The Economist magazine released results of its 2013 Where-to-be-born Index. This time, Nigeria is ranked as No. 80 out of 80 countries assessed.  Basically making it the WORST country to be born in out of the countries analyzed.

In the “Where-To-Be-Born Index” 2013, Nigeria has the lowest score of 4.74 points, placing us at the 80th position.

It ranks Switzerland as the best country to be born in with 8.22 points. The United States of America and Germany tie in the 16th position with 7.38 points.

Among the African countries on the list, South Africa comes first in the 53rd position with 5.89 points followed by Algeria in the 54th position with 5.86 points.

According to the EIU, the research “earnestly attempts to measure which country will provide the best opportunities for a healthy, safe and prosperous life in the years ahead.” Read more about the research on The Economist website.

Its quality-of-life index links the results of subjective life-satisfaction surveys—how happy people say they are—to objective determinants of the quality of life across countries. Being rich helps more than anything else, but it is not all that counts; things like crime, trust in public institutions and the health of family life matter too. In all, the index takes 11 statistically significant indicators into account. They are a mixed bunch: some are fixed factors, such as geography; others change only very slowly over time (demography, many social and cultural characteristics); and some factors depend on policies and the state of the world economy.

America, where babies will inherit the large debts of the boomer generation, languishes back in 16th place. Despite their economic dynamism, none of the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China) scores impressively. Among the 80 countries covered, Nigeria comes last: it is the worst place for a baby to enter the world in 2013.

Do you really think so? Is Nigeria really the  worst place for a baby to enter the world in 2013?

42 Comments on Is Nigeria Really the WORST Country to be Born In? The Economist Intelligence Unit ranks Nigeria as No.80 out of 80 countries in its 2013 “Where-To-Be-Born Index”
  • Lilz November 22, 2012 at 2:51 pm

    in my opinion they are absolutely right!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • 80 November 22, 2012 at 2:51 pm

    What they are telling me is that its better to be born in Bangladesh and Pakistan than in Nigeria? TUFIAKWA! I will be be born in No. 80 instead. 9ja you dey fall our hands oh! chai!

  • Mz Socially Awkward… November 22, 2012 at 2:54 pm

    Damn… I mean wait, Nigeria is worse than countries like Myamar, Niger, South Sudan, Afghanistan, etc? As with all surveys of this nature, I need to know the factors used as their basis for ranking countries before I can agree or disagree.

    • Matt November 22, 2012 at 3:11 pm

      I hope you know this is not the entire complete survey list. The countries you listed are not on this list. If you read the entire piece you would have seen the part where they said “they only assessed 80 Countries and of those 80 Countries Nigeria came 80”

      • mimi November 22, 2012 at 3:27 pm

        @ Matt; You’re right. Bella naija, this list only ranks us as 80th position out of 80 countries sampled. i guess any country not on the list is actually the worst.

  • ChiboyChuks November 22, 2012 at 2:59 pm

    Sis., I don’t agree with the result… #Bliss

    Kindly, visit:

  • Lulu November 22, 2012 at 3:04 pm

    I totally agree, Nigeria is messed up, period!!!

  • purplepearl November 22, 2012 at 3:12 pm

    I do not agree. This people are just bent on destroying our image, Thailand, Philippines, Bangladesh……are you for real????????? But then its a wake up call, we need to fix our country

    • tosin o November 23, 2012 at 10:27 am

      lol…did y’all read the criteria? Based on the criteria used to assess I have to agree with them that Naija could be the worst. Question: How much trust do you have in Public infrastructures? Can you call the fire dept, police, or even the EMERGENCY Medical Services and be guaranteed quality and prompt service? Are these infrastructures even in place? Does anyone hold them accountable? You do the math…
      Nevertheless…I LOVE NAIJA…there’s no place like home.

  • anna November 22, 2012 at 3:26 pm

    i know nigeria is bad, but it can’t be that bad now..haba. maybe number 75 would have been better.

    • adex January 23, 2014 at 2:15 pm

      )))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))) so you mean no. 75 is a good thing? ))))))))))))

  • Bleed blue November 22, 2012 at 3:28 pm

    It’s not a lie. The divide between the rich and the poor may have led some people to thinking Nigeria is not that bad. Most of you refuting it should open (I mean really open) your eyes to the plight of majority of children born in average Nigeria. What are their chances? For good health? Qualitative education? Security?

    The thing is, these countries listed here that get a lot of negative press (e.g. Pakistan) have at least one social welfare engine they can boast of. Pakistan as my example, has a very efficient ambulance system. I’ve been there, and with the level of third-worldism apparent there, it’s strangely amusing how efficient their ambulances are.

    I have several other examples but suffice it to say, the report isn’t far-fetched. Abeg let’s leave sentiments aside. Naija no make am.

  • giggy November 22, 2012 at 3:34 pm

    our image had been destroyed long ago pearl… truth is bitter but we have to face it, else we live in self denial.

  • destineddupsy November 22, 2012 at 3:41 pm

    yes i agree.not the worst but one of the worst,do u know the amount of graduate wasting away lets not go there.its quite unfortunate.

    • olu omo surrey November 23, 2012 at 1:49 pm

      Which Graduate????
      Na degree you thin say naija universities dey issue so???sex scandals with lecturers,bribes by yahoo boys etc….na just 9ja degree to be able to fed for 9ja setting..nuttin else

  • Foxy November 22, 2012 at 3:46 pm

    Oh I so agree with the results. Everyone else can see what we are except ourselves! These results don’t matter to our leaders- it’s Get Rich or Die Trying” however way you can! Nobody cares! What a pity…

  • Luqman November 22, 2012 at 4:03 pm

    The truth is bitter sometimes and it is very difficult to take, the statistic is right bcos some people in early 80’s knew where Nigeria was going to , that was why they gave birth to their kids in USA or UK and they are still doing it presently despite the fact that Nigeria is their abode. Our shambolic situation and haphazard way of doing things caused it.

  • Chattyzee November 22, 2012 at 4:09 pm

    I disagree with the statistics. Sentiments aside.

  • daeni November 22, 2012 at 4:10 pm

    When you take a critical view, you realise this is true. First, these surveys are mostly on a per-capita basis and so, when you compare available public amenities with the population size, Nigeria would most certainly be worse off. Two, where you are born presents, or at least attempts to paint a picture of your future—we can barely see Nigeria existing in the future, let alone those born into it. Another is the value of a Nigerian life in Nigeria. We all know this is abysmal. Even Dangote despite his wealth is not immune from “sudden this or that”, after all we breathe the same polluted air, we are governed by the same outdated laws and we all have similar worries about security, fear of the known unknowns, etc.etc.etc.(cases in point: Abubakar Rimi died from heart attack, due to the “fear of being robbed”—not robbed/shot/assassinated but from the fear of it!!! ; abdulkareem Adisa, former minister of works and housing died in a road accident —the infrastructure his department was responsible for “Roads and houses”). We can go on… For those who think this isn’t true and can comment on it just like I have; bear in mind you can think, read, write, have access to internet, you posses global awareness, browse BN and of course you have eaten!. When next you are outside your personal space, look at that child selling in the traffic or even prostituting—then you realise how lucky you are.

  • naboulove November 22, 2012 at 4:33 pm

    It is not an accurate study in my sense. where are all the wartorn African countries? DRCongo, Mali, Somalia etc. Afghanistan is missing.. I dont think Kaboul is better than Lagos. This study wd have relevance if more than 4 subsaharan countries were on the list namely Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa & Angola… Hellooooooooooo where are the others? Ghana? Sénégal? Côte d’Ivoire etc. etc. I can’t give credit to a study that doesn’t involve the world as a whole with all nations please. P.S: I am not Nigerian so it’s an objective POV driven by logic.

  • Ya November 22, 2012 at 5:28 pm

    80/80? Ahh, na A++ be dat na. Naija for life!

  • Mssexy November 22, 2012 at 5:41 pm

    haba where is ghana? this is not nice, so ghana is not good abi?
    even though i dont fancy them, but they shd be on the list, ts not that bad n their country too
    as for naija n #80 we got what we deserve, cause they v looked at the statistics of our leaders, all their kids r born abroad, school abroad and get healthcare abroad, so what do we expect? buffoon leaders

  • konnie November 22, 2012 at 7:49 pm

    These type of polls always translate to propaganda. Who controls the polls controls the conversation if you let them. Nigeria is a blessed country and it is a privilege to be Nigerian.
    Yes there are issues to be worked out but all countries have those issues to varying degrees. Nigeria’s biggest problem is that Nigerians don’t give her a chance, in governing, living or even speaking about her. A lot of the people commenting here will blow it if given a chance to do something and make a difference (put in positions of power), some others will hit it out of the park. all complainants should roll up their sleeves and make a difference in their own sphere (including moi) and this will roll up to Nigeria being the best it can be. Quit gripping and start blessing what God has given you. He didn’t make a mistake. if you start believing the polls, then it becomes a self fulfilling prophecy

  • NNENNE November 22, 2012 at 7:58 pm

    Well, may be if Nigerians would cut the number of children and wives they have, things would improve.How many Muslims in Pakistan has more than one wife? Given the size of our families, no social assistance would be enough.

    • James November 23, 2012 at 1:26 pm

      This what I have been saying…..too many kids is Nigeria problem.

  • Princess November 22, 2012 at 9:12 pm

    Actually only 80 countries were used for these poll and Nigeria ranked 80 out em all. I work for the UN so i know(some of you would ask how i know that). Nigeria is actually worst than 80. If compared with so many other countries, we would be way below. The rich might not experience dis but the less fortunate ones would. We have had numerous cases of child death during delivery its insane. The nurses are so careless, they could abandone a woman in labor for a phone call with a friend, the doctors are not professionals in their field and most times lack the necessary facilities, the environment and equipments are unclean/unkept causing infections to both the baby and mother. I mean if our govt was good, such medical needs should be free and given a very high priority but ofcourse the govt dont care about its people so why would they care about how our hospitals look. So many proposals have been written to them on how to better the conditions of our healthcare but because they have a brother/sister somewhere who needs a job, they would award the contract to such individual and send inconsistent report back to the UN saying how great the Nigerian citizens are meanwhile they are talking about their children. Sad much
    I cud go on about this but i just get so upset.

  • iamfascinating November 22, 2012 at 9:18 pm

    hmmn, everything is for a reason though,

  • Heeba November 22, 2012 at 11:04 pm

    Topic actually caught my eye……cos today I actually sent a friend a text that I ‘hate this country’ right now. Where do you want to start is it Corruption? – Which exists at all levels, classes etc those who ask for bribes before they do their jobs, those who encourage bribe….yes all or most Nigerians are guilty because you can,t be bothered to go through the right channels. Is it lawlessness? Let’s not even go there….’oops I will just throw trash out on the street because no one will fine or caution me’. How about selfishness and greed? – infect thats what I thrive on…I really don’t give a rats ass about my fellow citizen, neighbour..they can all die while I smile way to my South African condo, my private jet and my harem of ‘Shifty’ beauties. Hmmmnn.. How about our leaders? – gosh let’s not go there , ‘a total waste of space and ink’ we have too many clowns in our circus and jungle! Yes JUNGLE we live in….so who wants to be born in a jungle? Only animals and trust me I see them everyday… In uniforms, in regal attire, in dirty and worn out clothing….using their animal instincts to survive. It is amazing how some people still think it’s okay …..’omo make we jus dey manage am dey go’ there will come a time when it will no more be manageable and something must give way….and that’s when change will commence. Like a wealthy Nigerian and ex politician claims that he finds it hard to go back to his homeland….fear of high expectations from immediate family, fear of being mobbed/robbed, fear from opponents, fear of just seeing hungry and angry faces!

  • diamond November 22, 2012 at 11:46 pm

    This is so shameful,thankGod my I was not born in naija…u.s all d way

  • taiwo November 23, 2012 at 12:19 am

    this is all i can say “GOD GO HELP NAIJA”.

  • daphne November 23, 2012 at 10:29 am

    Whether we are ranked the worst country or not, Nigerians know that the country is so messed up. The rich are getting richer and the poor,poorer. Poverty, bad governance, insecurity, terrorism and so on, gives the country bad publicity. The ranking is just for publicity, but the controversy brings up the questions that needs to be answered, facts that needs to made known and solutions that needs to be applied.

  • Hmmm November 23, 2012 at 11:17 am

    Omo, I agree with them o. 100% sef!

  • her royalmajesty November 26, 2012 at 1:31 pm

    naija is that bad na, no be only 80 countries dey the whole world. meaning that nigeria is still better than some other countries. is well with us ooooo but then i still strongly believe in a better nigeria someday. nothing is impossible

  • Toluwarni November 29, 2012 at 11:37 pm

    There are 193 nations in the world and only 80 were mentioned.. That shows that atleast we’re among the 1st 80.. So its not that bad, but we need to improve though, even the so called World’s best country USA are 16th!

  • sammyjay November 30, 2012 at 3:32 pm

    God deyooooooooo imagine naija on the 80 list what about my brodas in ghana which list they fall to?

  • Friday January 2, 2013 at 9:13 am

    Typical abi?. 99.99% of 9ja ppl know say if u give 9ja “room”, jst turn ur bk, kiakia ego turn am 2 “parlour” bcs of xtnded family & soceity pressure. As long as u go become chief instead of THIEF, Y Not?. We r ALL guilty of d fundamental law in life—-Loss Of Conscience.

  • Junie January 15, 2013 at 10:11 am

    Lol@ ‘YA’….80/80…dats hilarious!
    I’m a Nigerian living in Nigeria but I try to travel to at least 4 countries in a year tho despite all d sidelong looks I get from non-Nigerians whenever I produce my green passport – the looks turn even more vicious(if possible) when the immigration guys ask where I’m staying and I mention a nice hotel or a highbrow area in whatever city I’m in…u kw like ‘what the hell gives this young (black ANNNND Nigerian)girl the right to stay in this kind of hotel or area?’ …that’s their bloody business…lol! I work hard for my money – started my business @ 22 and I spend it however I deem fit!
    Last year summer,my hubby and I decided to visit some friends and relatives in America to say thank you for coming (in large droves) for our wedding a couple months earlier – I was introduced to his very good friend’s gf – she could not be at d wedding – and we got talking – this silly chic had the nerve to say to me..’ U kw as an American, I totally detest Nigerians doing….’ I just tuned her out at that point oh…this is a girl I later learnt was even just still waiting in line to get d blue card and had only bn in d US a couple years…me self travel and get fone pass this ratchet babe oh!
    So how wont we be the 80/80 when even us Nigerians subconsciously support the fact that we are headed for no good? +even when we get british or american or whatever passport and theres negative news about Nigeria, the REAL citizens still diss you…a Nigerian with an international passport will always be a Nigerian first and a second class citizen of whatever country u struggled to get the passport of second! Don’t get me wrong, I know we need help but some of us have it better than others- 24/7 power, food on our tables, opportunity to travel, good cars, caring,safe families and all… I grew up not having much but God has blessed me and I try to help others too- that’s what we should all try to do and not drag ourselves down more than we have to – all the other nations of the world are doing a pretty good job of that.
    No matter what we do or say anyway, we will always remain Nigerians won’t we?We had better clean up in our own best interests!

  • Laja Odufuwa September 10, 2014 at 8:14 am

    I am not surprised at all, i was back home lately and i noticed some friends , relatives average children is between six and eight. Bringing childen into poverty is the root of Nigeria and Africa social problem. Some of my relatives can barely afford to bring up a child but they have 4,5,6,8 and even more. Our greate grandfathers had many children to work in the farm but this does not apply anymore as these kids are born in cities and urban areas. People have to be educated as to repercussion of having too many kids.

  • kuffy February 7, 2015 at 8:18 am

    I agree, Nigeria would be lower sef if they added countries like Ghana. Basic amenities like electricity and water are not provided and if they are, it’s not constant. Poor education system that is plagued by bribery and corruption especially at the tertiary level. Production of schooled but uneducated graduates who can’t find jobs and the few available chances are you won’t get them because you don’t ‘know somebody’. Stupid police, no fire service, basically no ambulances. Bad roads even interstate roads, poor city hygiene, bad unconcerned poorly facilitated health care system, kidnappings and every turn, boko haram insurgency, 30% of youth population are thugs. Government that just doesn’t care. In my state the governor’s wife established a school that costs about a million a term but her daughter is schooling in a public school in America.

  • kuffy February 7, 2015 at 8:28 am

    With all these terrible social conditions you would think at least you would be born into a household that you will at least find solace but 999 out of 1000 you won’t. terrible families, parents that can’t show affection, good examples or encourage you without being forceful. Your parents will 99.999% be capable of beating you to the extent of giving wounds for things like giving them a ‘bad’ look. You could get female ‘circumcision’ if you are unlucky. Your parents will give you 4 or more siblings that are really not needed because you probably not have enough clothes or food if you were alone

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