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12.85m Nigerians benefiting from social investment programmes, says FG


Sadiat Umar Farouk

The Federal Government has disclosed that over 12.85 million Nigerians are presently benefiting from its various Social Investment Programmes (SIPs) introduced by the current administration in 2016.

Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Umar Farouk, made the disclosure yesterday at the flag off of a partnership between the National Social Investment Office (NSIO) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC) to rid the programme of sharp practices.

The occasion, which held at the State House Auditorium, Abuja, was also used to launch a toll-free line to checkmate corruption and truancy in the school feeding and N-Power schemes of the Federal Government.The renewed partnership, according to the minister, would expose those who want to sabotage the efforts of the Federal Government in reducing extreme poverty.

“I am pleased to say that all these programmes have recorded resounding successes, directly impacting the lives of over 12 million Nigerians, with several millions of indirect beneficiaries, whose living standards have significantly improved through the value of chain created by the various Social Protection Initiatives.

“On their individual level, there are over 548,000 graduate and non-graduate beneficiaries under the N-Power; while Home-Grown School Feeding Programme has over 9.8 million beneficiaries; Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP) being coordinated by the Bank of Industry, has over 2.1 million beneficiaries from TraderMoni, MarketMoni and FarmerMoni; and Conditional Cash Transfer initiative has almost 400,000 beneficiaries,” she said.

While noting that the poverty rate in Nigeria was almost suffocating, Farouk said reports have it that over 120 million people would be living in extreme poverty in Nigeria by the year 2030.

“The National Social Investment Programme (NSIP) was set up in 2016 to coordinate and supervise all components of the social protection programme. To achieve the task of lifting 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in 10 years in line with Mr President’s directive, we must as a ministry ensure that all our poverty alleviation strategies and programmes remained strengthened and devoid of infractions that could undermine ongoing efforts to empower our poor and vulnerable citizens.

“This is why this collaborative engagement between NSIO and ICPC is crucial as it aims to prevent and eliminate third party corruption in the National Social Investment Programme N-SIP,” she added. Also speaking, Special Adviser to the President on SIP, Mariam Uwais, said that over 6.1 million households had been captured on the National Social Register.

According to her, the ICPC would help the NSIO identify and punish those who engage in the fraud under the programmes.Stressing that loopholes in the programmes in the Federal Capital Territory had been blocked, she said there were still challenges in other states.

The ICPC Chairman, Prof. Bolaji Owasanoye, warned that those running away with the SIP money would soon be guests at ICPC.He said the Commission was poised to uncover the criminals with links in the NSIO system.According to him, the new partnership would embark on massive campaigns to demystify what many Nigerians do not know about the programmes.


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NSIOSadiya Umar-Farouk
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