Nigeria has the world’s third lowest life expectancy rate of 55 years, the United Nations has said.
In its new report Monday, the United Nations Population Fund(UNFPA) said the life expectancy of an average Nigerian in 2019 is only better than those of people in Sierra Leone, Chad and the Central African Republic.
The three countries have respectively 53, 54, 54 years as their life expectancy rates, the report states.
War-torn Afghanistan has 65 years; Somalia has 58; and Syria has 73.
The report puts Nigeria’s current population at 201 million.
The report also states that the total fertility rate among Nigerian women has dropped from 6.4 in 1969 to 5.3 in 2019, this means an average Nigerian woman gives birth to at least five children.
The UN agency’s report shows that Nigeria’s population moved from 54.7 million in 1969 to 105.4 million in 1994. It grew to 201.0 million in 2019.
Of this number, 44 per cent are between the ages of 0 and 14, while 32 per cent are within the ages of 10 and 24.
The report differs slightly from the estimate of the National Bureau of Statistics, which reported in 2018 that Nigeria’s population was 198 million.
It is not clear whether the two reports relied on different data, or the country recorded the additional 3 million in the last 12 months.
The report also reveals that “child marriage” in Nigeria by the age of 18 years is 44 per cent, while the adolescent birth rate at age 15-19 per 1000 girls in the country is 145.
The report also says contraceptive prevalence rate by any method among Nigerian women aged 15-49 is only 19 per cent, while contraceptive prevalence by modern method among Nigerian women by the same age bracket 15 per cent.