The Presidency has
unfurled tentative details on the
implementation of its N500 billion social welfare programme,
revealing that one million extremely poor Nigerians would
be direct beneficiaries of the
N5,000 monthly cash transfer.
The payment which is to commence once the budget is
approved by the National Assembly, is besides another five
social interventions that include the provision of one meal a day to school pupils in some selected
A total of N60 billion would be directly transferred to the one million extremely poor Nigerians,
according to a statement issued by the Office of the Vice President in accordance to
President Muhammadu Buhari’s
vision of building human capital.
Other elements of the social intervention scheme revealed,
yesterday, include the 500,000 direct jobs, which will see
unemployed graduates being
trained and deployed as volunteer teachers in their communities while still prospecting for jobs in their chosen professions.
The details as released by Mr Adeolu Akande, Senior Special Assistant, Media in the office of
the Vice President, also disclosed a youth employment plan which will see the training of 370,000
non-graduates youths in different skills and vocational programmes.
“The recruitment of beneficiaries into the volunteer teaching jobs and the skill acquisition training
scheme for non graduates would be done on state basis, including the FCT and opened to all Nigerians of different shades,”Akande said.
Another initiative also revealed is the micro credit scheme where one million Nigerians, mostly
small scale traders, artisans and market women, would get a one time soft loan of N60,000 each
through the Bank of Industry.
And finally there is the free education plan for students of
Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), where government will pay tuition for
Explaining the administration’s
determination to positively impact the capacity of Nigerians
through the unprecedented
intervention, Akande disclosed that at no time in the nation’s
budgetary history had the Federal Government made a
specific vote of such volume for social welfare.
“Even economic historians now say that not only is the half a trillion Naira vote unprecedented,
but it is also the greatest service ever done to the Nigerian state and people by any federal government administration,”
He noted that the six social safety plans would reduce high levels of poverty and
vulnerabilities, while also increasing Nigeria’s Human
Development Index on the global UN rankings.
“The President’s vision is to increase investments in human capital to guarantee security for all, employment and improved well being of the people,” the Vice President’s media aide added.
He disclosed that the Presidency was aware that past attempts to address poverty had suffered
because of insufficient political
will, presence of various UN- uncoordinated initiatives and poorly targeted beneficiaries, among other factors, and was working to avoid the pitfalls.
The Senior Special Assistant said for the Conditional Cash Transfer, CCT, where one million extremely
poor Nigerians will receive N5000 monthly in 2016, the
money would be paid directly to the beneficiaries through a payment system that is being worked out.
He said the World Bank and the Bill Gates Foundation were collaborating with the Presidency
to develop an efficient payment
system. All together, about N60 billion had been estimated to be
paid out to extremely poor Nigerians. And the implementation of the programme starts once the budget is passed.