NSIP: Why It Is Hard For People To Appreciate What We Do – Mrs. Uwais

File: The Special Adviser to the President on Social Investment Programme, Mrs. Maryam Uwais.
File: The Special Adviser to the President on Social Investment Programme, Mrs. Maryam Uwais.

 

The Special Adviser to the President on Social Investment Programme, Mrs. Maryam Uwais, has said it is hard for people to appreciate what the programme does due to the way it is run. 

Mrs. Uwais said this on Thursday when she appeared on Channels TV’s  breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily. 

While responding to a claim (last year) by the wife of the President, Mrs. Aisha Buhari, that she does not know any beneficiary of the programme, Mrs. Uwais said most of those who benefit from the Federal Government scheme are in far places.

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According to her, “these people are not visible in the landscape of our country. They are in far away places and we did not approach her (Mrs. Buhari).

“So, I am saying she must have been misinformed. The information is available. We know the numbers in every state. Every month, I prepare an update and we have a brochure we circulate.”

She assured that the programme is about Nigerians, especially those need it.

“We did not ignore any state. It is not about north or south. It is about Nigerian citizens who deserve the benefit,” she explained.

“Because we are doing things differently, it is harder for people to appreciate what  we are trying to do.”

‘Are They Paying Ghosts?’ Federal Lawmaker Questions NSIP’s Credibility

 

 

Following allegations of a scam in the National Social Investment Programme (NSIP), a Federal lawmaker, Ben Kalu, has further questioned the Special Adviser to the President on NSIP, Mrs Maryam Uwais on the credibility of the implementation of the programme.

The Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development had earlier in April commenced the payment of conditional cash transfer to poor households in Abuja to assuage the effects of COVID-19 lockdown.

Kalu, who is the Chairman, House Committee on Media in an interview on Channels Television breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily on Thursday said the Federal Government should be more transparent about how the money is disbursed by making public the names of the beneficiaries of the programme.

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“We are faced with a crisis. This is an intervention programme. We are supposed to feel the impact now. The poor should feel the impact of this programme.

“You said you shared money recently and I represent a constituency. And there are 360 of us (Federal Lawmakers) and all of them are saying we are not feeling the impact.

“Who are you paying this money to?. Where is the register you are using? How did you compute that register? Where are you publishing it? ,” Kalu questioned.

He added that, “You said you paid 100 people from my constituency, we cant see them. Are they ghosts? Are you paying ghosts? Publish their names let us see the beneficiaries.”

In response, Uwais also during the interview on Channels Television said the Ministry worked with traditional rulers in identifying the poor households that benefit from the programme.

She added that the law (FoI Act) forbids making public the names of beneficiaries of grants without their consent.

“Section 14 of the FoI Act says people who receive social grants should not be published or made disclosed without pre-consent,” Uwais said.

The Senate President, Ahmad Lawan and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila had earlier on Tuesday faulted the implementation of the programmed after a meeting with the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Farouq in Abuja.

They called for the immediate suspension of the register used for the scheme when they were informed by officials that accompanied the Minister to the gathering that some N12billion was being paid monthly for school feeding programme without verification.

There Is So Much Secrecy About National Social Investment Programme – Lawmaker

Ben Kalu

 

 

As the National Social Investment Programme (NSIP) continues to generate controversy, a Federal lawmaker, Ben Kalu, has raised an alarm that there is so much secrecy about the programme.

Kalu, who is the Chairman House Committee on Media, made the claim on Thursday during an interview on Channels Television breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily.

He expressed dissatisfaction at the response by the Special Adviser to the President on NSIP, Mrs Maryam Uwais, who said names of the beneficiaries of the programme cannot be made public.

Earlier, the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development had commenced the payment of conditional cash transfer to poor households in Abuja to assuage the effects of COVID-19 lockdown.

 

A Call For Transparency

Kalu during the interview, however, said the Ministry needed to be more transparent about the disbursement of funds.

He said, “The programme is a wonderful programme but our concern is about the delivery. There is so much secrecy about the programme. They need to be more transparent.”

“Telling us you cannot publish the names of the beneficiaries…we members of the National Assembly, we are entitled to know what you are doing.

“This is based on the Constitution and will also enable us to address the questions coming from members of our constituents concerning the programme,” the lawmaker added.

 

A Secret Operation?

According to him, there might be need for investigation if the Ministry continues to operate in ‘secrecy’ and without carrying the National Assembly along in its operation.

“To treat the programme is secrecy and then we are asked to ignore it because of protocol…We are not probing them at the moment but if the need arises, we will invite them,” Kalu stressed.

On Tuesday, the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, faulted the implementation of the programme after a meeting with the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Farouq, in Abuja.

They called for the immediate suspension of the register used for the scheme when they were informed by officials that accompanied the Minister to the gathering that some N12 billion was being paid monthly for school feeding programme without verification.

N500bn Spent Annually On Social Investment Programmes – FG

PHOTO: NSIP official website

 

The sum of N500billion is spent annually on National Social Investment Programme (NSIP) by the Federal Government.

This was disclosed on Monday by the Minister of State Budget and National Planning Clement Agba at the 60th annual conference of the Nigerian Economic Society in Abuja.

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He said the Federal Government is committed to grassroots development and has shown this by investing N500 billion annually since 2016 in the national social investment program.

“In order to create a more inclusive society that enhances the quality of life. The government has continued to implement the social investment program.

“The sum of N500billion has been appropriated annually for the scheme since 2016. This reflects the continued determination of the government to pursue an inclusive society and achieve growth. Policies such as the n-power scheme have seen 500,000 graduates and 26,000 others engaged.

“Under the national home-grown school feeding program, as at March 2019 over 9.5million school children across 30states are being fed and over 1913 cooks empowered,” Agba said.

The Minister added that government enterprise and empowerment program has seen to the disbursement of  N1.71million loans to small businesses and farmers across the 36 states and the FCT.

President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration launched the Social Investment Programmes to address poverty through the Home-Grown School Feeding Programme, the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP), conditional cash transfer and N-Power.