“Papa Amaka, hope say you wear raincoat today oo… Remember wetin government talk oo.”
So early this week, I saw a headline that the Minister of Finance in Nigeria said that the FG (Federal Government) was going to limit the number of children per mother. I’m not going to go into how I think it almost doesn’t make sense that this sanction is to be placed on the wife meaning the husband can still have his football team with different mothers. (Oops, I kinda went there, did I?)
Anyways, I’m sure we have sensible people in government who will think through this policy if it is ever passed.
This post is about me wondering if Nigeria is ready for a population control policy.
In 1979 in China, they introduced the one-child policy. It limited the amount of children parents could have although there were some exceptions like in some rural areas if the first child was a daughter and then if the ethnic group was a minority. It lasted about three or more decades and according to the Chinese government, about 400 million births were avoided. (They still hold the top populous country in the world with 1.386 billion people as at 2017)
How China implemented the policy
The Family Planning Policy was enforced through a financial penalty in the form of the “social child-raising fee”, sometimes called a “family planning fine” in the West, which was collected as a fraction of either the annual disposable income of city dwellers or of the annual cash income of peasants, in the year of the child’s birth. For instance, in Guangdong, the fee is between 3 and 6 annual incomes for incomes below the per capita income of the district, plus 1 to 2 times the annual income exceeding the average. Both members of the couple need to pay the fine.
As part of the policy, women were required to have a contraceptive intrauterine device (IUD) surgically installed after having a first child, and to be sterilized by tubal ligation after having a second child. From 1980 to 2014, 324 million Chinese women were fitted with IUDs in this way and 108 million were sterilized. Women who refused these procedures – which many resented – could lose their government employment and their children could lose access to education or health services. The IUDs installed in this way were modified such that they could not be removed manually, but only through surgery. In 2016, following the abolition of the one-child policy, the Chinese government announced that IUD removals would now be paid for by the government.
It was changed to a two-child policy in 2016.
Back to my country Nigeria.
In my country, I have heard of some people in some areas who don’t say the number of children they have due to superstitious or traditional beliefs I suppose. People in these areas consider it an abomination to count people while they are still alive. (This is a problem of population census in Nigeria)
And then the ones who see children as a show of wealth. The more, the merrier. (El Oh El. Do we still have people that think like this?)
Oh, and as a country described by the International Monetary Fund to be developing, we are the 7th populous country in the world. (Only African country in top 10, Whoop! Whoop!)
Will population control policies work in Nigeria? What will the fine(s) be? What will the incentives be? Because there just has to be an incentive for this to work
Imagine, Papa Amaka ‘inconveniencing’ himself when government won’t appreciate his efforts.
Mama Amaka is growing fatter due to hormonal imbalance of birth control pills.
What are your thoughts on population control policies in Nigeria?
This is the List of countries in the world by population
Found this when I was surfing, 10 astounding population policies around the world
P.S: Male birth control pills have passed a safety test. Coming soon.
* Reference – Wikipedia – One-child policy