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N-SIP: Applause for the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs as Nigerians seek retention of programme

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Abubakar Yusuf

Since the transfer of National Social Investment Programme (N-SIP) to the Ministry of Humanitatian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Developement under the watch of Hajiya Sadiya Umar-Farouk, alot of possible insinuations and decisions have characterise the activities in the new Ministry.

N – Power as one of the components of the Social investment Programme had grew from strength to strength, with subtle agitation that negate series of aspersions by naysayers, to growing acceptance of the programme across the country.

Because of the massive acceptance of the programme by the critical stakeholders, the programme was undergoing a wholistic redesignation from the operators as well as beneficiaries, whose out of fear of losing a steady income that had exit them from the labour market are yearning for different redesign of the programme.

The hallmark of this decision and request from the thousands of beneficiaries across the country, was the recent visit to the NASS leadership, pleading with the government to allow more time, rather than being thrown into the labour market without restrictions.

This singular actions of beneficiaries across the country was a testament of expression of satisfaction, with the way and manner the handlers are going about the N-Power programme, by and large the N-SIP.

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With unimpeded and seamless process of transferring from the Vice President’s office to regular payments of beneficiaries enumerated to avoid policy somersaults, the parent Ministry under the Minister of Humanitatian Services has not left any stone unturned, towards achieving an acceptable and workable template.

The agitation for retention, enhancement on their part being pursued by the beneficiaries is an indication of the workability of the programme and the sincerity of purpose of the current handlers to the excitement of the participants.

The usual hue and cry from the beneficiaries of the programme particularly the N-Power participants had given credence, going by the facts that the fear of relieving them of the programme, may be another awkward chapter of their lives.

The confidence repose on the programme and its operators is always at the front burner, whenever decisions are being reached to the advantage of the current participants recruited in 2016 and 2018 till date.

The anxiety of being thrown back to the labour market had been the driving force behind their confrontation against the goverment, with a strong resistance not to go back to the labour market or return to the poverty ridden status, where the laudable government decision came on board.

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This also coincides with the decision of government under the Ministry of Humanitatian Services powered by Hajiya Sadiya Umar-Farouk to introduce a transition programme for the existing participants and current beneficiaries of the programmes, so as to give them a sense of belonging,to move them permanently from labour market to gainful employment.

The transition programme in line with the global practices was to give a rising hope to the beneficiaries, rather than allow them to wallow on the streets and labour market to the detriment of the policy and image of the country.

Having addressed basic social, economic and by extension security problems bedevilling the country in the last few years and subsequent years, that will also be encompass into the National developement rolling plan.

Farouk-Sadiya’s decision to embark on another round of recruitment attracted massive response from the large unemployment youths all round the country, a decision consider as timely and germane in view of the biting economic situation, arising from world ravaged pandemic of COVID-19, that led to the four consecutive weeks lockdown of the country, and subsequent monthly eased lockdown in and around the country.

To show the enthusiasm of many unemployed Nigerians, one week after the portal for recruitment of new N- Power volunteers otherwise known as Batch C was unveiled, over I Million enrollees was recorded into the programme.

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More than two weeks after the portal was made available by the Ministry, 4.4 million Nigerians had indicated interest to be engaged in the exercise, an indication that over 10 Million people may join the Social Investement Programme in the next one month.

Already, clamour for more slots for the Batch C programme from 400,000 proposed by the Ministry to 2 Million, is already gaining more prominence and support of the people to attract/draw government attention.

This alone had given impetus to the efforts of the sole handlers which is the Ministry of Humanitatian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Developement, to give more opportunities to many Nigerians to address the growing unemployable status.

With efforts of the Ministry under Sadiya Umar-Farouk’s leadership, other intervention programmes like Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT), GEEP and school feeding programme has attracted alot of excitement to many Nigerians.

The legacies being imparted on the current youths and the vulnerable in Nigerian society,will gradually bring to bare the developement of the country in the shortest possible time.

Written From Abuja, By Abubakar Yusuf

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