The Federal Government has commenced the payment of N5,000 monthly to one million vulnerable Nigerians.
In a statement released, Monday, by Laolu Akande, Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity to Vice president Yemi Osinbajo, the government stated that the payment was effected through the Conditional Cash Transfer, CCT, of the government’s Social Investment Programmes, SIP.
According to the statement, one million Nigerians would receive N5,000 monthly payments under the CCT as a form of social safety net for the poorest and most vulnerable as budgeted for in the 2016 Budget.
Mr. Akande added that many of the beneficiaries have already reported receiving their first payments in the first batch that commenced last week.
“In the first batch that commenced last week, nine states would be covered, and many of the beneficiaries have already reported receiving their first payments by Friday last week, December 30, 2016.
“Funds for the commencement of the payments in four states were released last week to the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) – the platform that hosts and validates payments for all government’s social intervention programmes. Funds for another set of five states to complete the first batch of nine states would follow soon.”
The statement listed Borno, Kwara, Bauchi, Cross Rivers, Niger, Kogi, Oyo, Ogun and Ekiti states as states in the first batch to commence the CCT statement. It however said that the states were selected because they had a social register that identified the vulnerable and poorest Nigerians.
“Though the sequence for the payment of the money would be operationally managed by NIBSS, beneficiaries in Borno, Kwara and Bauchi States have started receiving the money. The other states in the first batch to commence the CCT payments are Cross Rivers, Niger, Kogi, Oyo, Ogun & Ekiti States,” Mr. Akande said.
“The nine pilot states were chosen because they have an existing Social Register that successfully identified the most vulnerable and poorest Nigerians through a tried and tested community based targeting (CBT) method working with the World Bank. However other states have already begun developing their Social Registers and would be included in subsequent phases of the CCT implementation.”
According to the statement, the federal government, with the support of the World Bank, has adopted the CBT for developing the social register in the other states around the country for transparency, objectivity and credibility in the selection of the poorest and vulnerable Nigerians. Hence, the federal government will soon commence community mobilisation for the creation of the register in more states, to expand the scope and reach of the CCT across the country.
Other states listed to have complied with the stipulated framework provided and are set for the community based targeting method for development of social register include Plateau, Jigawa, Adamawa, Anambra, Benue, Enugu, Katsina and Taraba States.
These states, Mr. Akande said, are to be followed by Delta, Gombe, Kaduna, Kano, Imo and Ogun States. The government also assured that once the information garnered are entered into the social register, cash transfers would be disbursed to beneficiaries.
“Once the community mobilisation, identification and selection processes are completed, the information garnered from the poorest households would be entered onto the Social Register in the
states and the National Register at NIBSS, after which the cash transfers would be disbursed to the beneficiaries.”
The statement also disclosed that funds approved for the SIP are domiciled with the Ministry of Budget and National Planning.
Meanwhile, the federal government said that with the commencement of the CCT, the Buhari administration is now implementing four of the federal government’s SIP.
Mr. Akande said the N-Power Volunteer Corps designed to hire half a million unemployed graduates has now engaged 200,000, and the National Homegrown School Feeding Programme now runs in three states.
He said the Buhari administration has also kicked-off the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme, GEEP.
“Under GEEP, soft loans ranging from N10,000 to 100,000 have been designed for artisans, traders, market women among others. Already, thousands of cooperatives, market women associations, farmers and enterprising youths, have been identified and registered for the purpose, on an ongoing basis, and the disbursement of the soft loans through the Bank of Industry have started since Nov 25, 2016.
“At the last count, for the first phase, beneficiaries have been drawn from the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Abia, Adamawa, Bauchi, Delta, Imo, Kwara, Kano, Katsina, Lagos, Osun, Oyo, Ogun and Kogi States.”
The statement however said that regarding the GEEP, disbursements were halted and deferred until after the festive season but vetting and approval of beneficiaries are now being continued
Commenting on the 200,000 beneficiaries of the N-power programme, Mr. Akande said about 100,000 graduates have been physically verified, adding that they have started receiving their N30,000 stipends.
“Regarding the 200,000 beneficiaries of the N-Power programme, close to 50 per cent of the graduates, have now been physically verified, and started receiving their monthly stipends of N30,000 last week. A second batch of 300,000 unemployed graduates are expected to be
selected early this year to make up the half a million target set by the Buhari administration.
“The verified graduates are now being deployed to work as assistant teachers in schools, as community health aides and as agricultural extension workers, in more than 20 States of the Federation. These sates include; Abia, Adamawa, Bauchi, Anambra, Benue, Cross Rivers, Borno, Gombe, Edo, Jigawa, Katsina, Plateau, Kogi, Osun, Rivers, Zamfara, Niger, Sokoto, Ogun and Taraba.”
In the same vein, the government said it has also started the implementation of the National Home-grown School Feeding programme designed to feed 5.5 million school children for 200 school days in the first phase of the programme. According to the statement, the initial design was to
feed pupils in 18 States but funding challenges had affected an earlier take-off. It however said that the programme has now commenced in Osun, Kaduna and Anambra States, adding that more states are expected to join this new year.
The federal government reiterated its commitment to touching the lives of millions of vulnerable Nigerians, especially in the new year, in fulfilment of its Change agenda.
“In the new year, it is the plan of the Federal Government to scale up the implementation of the SIP to touch the lives of millions of Nigerians in fulfilment of its promises and in furtherance of its Change agenda,” Mr. Akande said.
Criminal minds threatening Army with travel ban: Buratai
Tukur Buratai, Nigeria’s Chief of Army Staff has disclosed that he does not mind living in Nigeria for the rest of his life.
Buratai made this statement on Monday in a meeting with Army Commanders in Abuja, where they deliberated on the recent End SARS protest and pockets of violence across the country.
Information Nigeria recalls there have been calls by International bodies calling for a travel ban to be placed on some military officers accused of human rights abuses in Nigeria.
Buratai attacked the international organizations clamoring for a ban on top personnel and soldiers over rights abuses. According to him, his first trip outside Nigeria was when he was 50 and that he doesn’t mind if he has to live in Nigeria for the rest of his life.
“Criminal elements are threatening us with travel ban but we are not worried because we must remain in this country to make it better. The first time I travelled outside of this country, I was already 50 years and a General, so I don’t mind if I live the rest of my life here” The Cable quoted him as saying
At the meeting, the Army chief said recent events across the country have shown the determination of unscrupulous individuals and groups to cause chaos by all means.
“The events of the past few days in our dear nation have shown the determination of some unscrupulous individuals and groups to destabilise Nigeria by all means,” he said.
These individuals, groups and other undesirable elements have hijacked the peaceful #EndSARS protest marches resulting to widespread violence, acts of wanton destruction and looting of public and private properties in many parts of the country. These acts led to the imposition of curfew in several states of the federation.
Despite all these, the army has continued to exercise restraint applied all the principles of internal security operations and fully abided by the internationally recognised rules of engagement as contained in our published standard operating procedures for internal security operations which are derived from the International human rights laws and are in accordance with the international principles guiding the use of force.” he said.
How iron protector prevented my shop from being robbed: Business man
Chima Smart Nwaneri, a businessman who operates in Owerri, Imo state has disclosed how suspected robbers were unable to burgle his office due to an iron protector.
Nwaneri thanked God for wisdom saying they couldn’t access his goods because of the protector on his ceiling.
Chima wrote on his Twitter account;
“So robbers visited my office where i do my business, but I thank God for wisdom, they couldn’t enter because of the protector on the ceiling..
Help me thank God….”
#EndSARS: We are not collection of angels, Nigerian Police says
The Nigerian police have said its officers are not angels, but the force is doing its best to serve Nigerians better.
This was disclosed in a statement posted on Twitter by the force. This comes after several unrest and pockets of violence that greeted the endsSARS protest against police brutality.
The Nigerian police appear to have started an online campaign to redeem their image and rebuild trust with Nigerian citizens, following the nationwide #EndSARS protests and its devastating fallout.
The security agency which admitted that it is not a collection of angels, however told Nigerians that it is doing its best to ensure better services.
The police, Monday night, uploaded a campaign flyer on Twitter, via their official handle @PoliceNG.
“We are not a collection of angels, but we are doing our best to serve you better,” said the flyer which was produced by the police public relations department, Force Headquarters, Abuja.
— Nigeria Police Force (@PoliceNG) October 26, 2020
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