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Obi says FG’s cash transfer can’t lift citizens off poverty

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Peter Obi

The Vice Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 elections, Mr. Peter Obi, has explained that the cash transfer employed by the Federal Government to lift people out of poverty will not work out in the country.

Speaking on The Morning Show on Arise Television yesterday, Obi said the planned monthly disbursement of N5,000 to 24 million people for six months would not achieve the desired results of pulling people out of poverty.

He argued that for one to be classified as living in poverty, the person would be earning $1.9 or less per day, which is approximately N800 amounting to N24,000 a month.

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Giving someone N5,000 a month, when he needs at least N24,000 to survive, will have little or no effect, let alone pulling them out of poverty, he asserted.

“Any government that desires to pull its people out of poverty should adopt a properly articulated fiscal and monetary stimulus to support micro, small and medium enterprises, and provide jobs that will pay people at least N25,000 per month,” Obi submitted.

Citing Bangladesh, where some aggressive poverty eradication strategies worked well, Obi said:
“In 2008, I travelled to Bangladesh with a team of professionals and we studied poverty eradication strategies as employed by their government. We had encounter with the locals in rural areas, and we saw first hand the techniques they employed to pull their people out of poverty.

“They had micro credit facilities at the rural level, supervised by the government but driven by the private sector. These credit institutions support the locals in their trades and agricultural endeavours. The government also steps in to buy whatever is produced by the rural residents and export them.”

According to him, the per capita income of Bangladesh in 2008 was $635. Today, after 12 years of aggressive poverty eradication, their per capita income is $1,900.

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Peter Obi
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