The Federal Government has begun disbursement of Cash Grants to Vulnerable Groups in Cross River and Bayelsa states.
The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development Sadiya Umar Farouq, flagged the programme off on Thursday.
She said that that the National Social Investment Programmes have reduced the poverty index in the country to 43%.
The minister, who also launched the digitized payment for the Conditional Cash Transfer programme and on-boarding of 2nd Stream of Independent Monitors Programme in Cross River, stated that the poverty index of Nigeria before the President Buhari led administration was at 70%.
“Since the inception of President Muhammadu Buhari’s Administration in 2015, when it inherited a national poverty incidence level averaging 70%, the Federal Government has paid more attention to generating solutions to address the plight of the poor and vulnerable in the country despite other economic challenges.
“This informed the decision to initiate the National Social Investment Programme (NSIP) as a strategy for poverty reduction and enhancing social inclusion among our people especially Women in rural areas.
“I’m also happy to tell you that the country’s poverty incidence has now reduced to 43% which is an achievement by this administration to reduce poverty by over 20%”.
Umar Farouq advised the beneficiaries to make judicious use of the grant to improve their commercial activities which will help ease them out of poverty.
In his welcome address, the Governor of Bayelsa state Prof. Benedict Ayade thanked the minister for her numerous humanitarian and Social welfare programs and called on the ministry to patronize rice farms established in the state specifically to support the Home Grown School Feeding Program.
“The school feeding program in Bayelsa state is very robust and the state has enjoyed special support from the federal government.
“We set up these factories after we saw the budget provision for the school Feeding Programme. Three factories came into existence occasioned by the existence of your ministry. We plead with you to patronize these Rice factories which are gluten-free”.
In Bayelsa state, Governor Douye Diri also thanked the Minister for various Social Investment Programmes in the state which have greatly impacted the poor and vulnerable.
3351 beneficiaries from across the 11 Local Government Areas of Cross River state will get a one-off grant N20,000 each while 50 Independent Monitors will get N30,000 monthly , devices and engagement letters. I’m Bayelsa, 2219 vulnerable persons will benefit as well as 40 Independent Monitors.
Dr Nasir Sani-Gwarzo mni, NPOM