This blog is intended to go along with Population: An Introduction to Concepts and Issues, by John R. Weeks, published by Cengage Learning. The latest edition is the 12th (it came out in 2015), but this blog is meant to complement any edition of the book by showing the way in which demographic issues are regularly in the news.

If you are a user of my textbook and would like to suggest a blog post idea, please email me at: john.weeks@sdsu.edu

Monday, July 2, 2012

Nigerian President Urges People to Limit Family Size

In a genuinely important development, the President of Nigeria has come out publicly encouraging Nigerian couples to limit their family size. A few days ago BBC News reported that:

President Goodluck Jonathan said people were having too many children, and went on to back birth control measures.
He said that in particular, uneducated people were having too many children, and urged people to only have as many children as they could afford.
Mr Jonathan said legislation and policies aimed at controlling the number of births might be considered in future.
He said he had asked the National Population Commission to inform people about birth control before taking the issue further.
Indeed, it appears that the National Population Commission has been mobilized into action. The Population Media Center reports that:
He said at the swearing-in of the newly appointed chairman and 22 of the 23 commissioners of the National Population Commission (NPC) at the Presidential Villa Abuja that though regulation of population is “very sensitive”, the Federal Government cannot wait until it becomes uncontrollable before facing the menace.
He, therefore, directed the new NPC team to start advocacy campaign on birth control, promising them of government supports and funding.
Now, it may just be a coincidence that all of this happened only a few days after The Onion poked a bit of fun at population issues in Nigeria. Or, perhaps The Onion had the inside scoop on President Jonathan's intentions. Either way, this is bound to be beneficial in the long run.

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