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|Leave NSIP Out Of Your Political Campaigns Against FG, Group Tells Bala Mohammed by Itopalucky(m): 7:34pm On Jan 25, 2022|
........reels out observed achievements of the NSIP
A pro-Government group named Agents for Change has responded to Governor Bala Mohammed’s claims of how N1trillion budgeted for the Social Investment Programme of the Federal Government is being diverted into private pockets by those implementing it.
The group in a statement which it made available to the press as of Friday, January 21, 2022; said, “Governor Bala Mohammed, leave NSIP out of your 2023 political campaigns against FG”, said; “We are shocked to have learnt of Governor Bala Mohammed’s claims of looted NSIP funds. Highly placed persons in no less the person of a Governor like His Excellency Bala Mohammed ought to know that making of baseless claims is highly unacceptable except for the mere purpose of ‘beer parlour gist’ which should there not be taken serious as it may be coming a place of intoxication.
“For the record, evidences rather abound as to how the NSIP has really been implemented even effectively down to the grassroots across Nigeria, Bauchi State inclusive. In Bauchi State alone, millions of citizens at the grassroot have been benefitting and are still benefitting at the moment from the NSIP.
“Obviously, it is either His Excellency Bala Mohammed is not informed as to developments within his own State as very possibly due to his 2023 ambition he is hardly in his own State to note from his fellow citizens, the on-the-spot testimonies of the NSIP or maybe he is being economic with the truth for the purpose of his political interest especially as 2023 is fast approaching and obviously he needs fallacies to sell to as many gullible voters as possible to suit his personal political interest in his capacity as a politician.
“We therefore urge the Governor to come out and tender a public apology over such misleading statement of his, in his personality as leader of a State, a leader who ought to not be caught in the web of steering up the public’s bad emotion for the mere fun of it. As Governor, His Excellency Bala Muhammed ought to know that his words hold much water, hence it must be weighty in evidence and laden even with overflowing proofs, else he will be disrespecting his office and the very sensibility of the people of his State and consequently Nigerians who hold him and his words as a Governor, in high esteem.
“Whatever could have misled Governor Bala Mohammed to make such reckless statement, this is another day for him to have the necessary rethink and reconsideration, perhaps he should reach out to the NSIP coordinator in Bauchi State for facts and figures, then he should compare them independently with realities on ground by embarking on some fact-finding mission and see things for himself and hear testimony by himself and see for himself how very wrong he was with his looting accusation against the coordinators of the NSIP; in case his aides are as well shielding him away from the facts and the good news of what the NSIP is doing effectively and commendably well enough across the country and in his own State, Bauchi State. When he is done with the fact-finding mission, he should tender that public apology as it is necessary to set the records straight at all times for posterity sake. He should as well, promise never to speak without being certain of what he is talking about exactly as words indeed have power, a power that should not be abused, as words even fake news have caused wars before in history, and Nigeria as it stands now, needs no war of any such but rather an environment of truth and peace for sustainable development. Hence leaders must by all means, regardless of political intent, stay away from dishing of fake news under any guise.
“For the records, the persons implementing the NSIP are persons of high integrity. They are persons who wear the toga of accountability; they are persons of substance who as against Governor Bala Mohammed’s looting claims, will not earn for themselves, what is not rightfully theirs. Hence how Governor Bala Mohammed came to his conclusion that NSIP funds even if a kobo or two, before to even say a whooping N1trillion worth of NSIP funds are being looted, is not only misleading but unfortunate and shocking, and it goes far to show how himself just like any other politician can simply be reckless with statements not minding what the possible citizen fall-out could be,” the group emphasized.
The group emphasized further that the polity is too heated up at the moment and the NSIP is really having positive impact on the citizens and that hence the citizens of Nigeria and even of Bauchi State will not fall for any fake-news purveyor or alarmist who try to see nothing good that the Buhari-led Federal Government is doing but rather are focused on hitting the heads of the citizens against that of the Federal Government and those implementing the NSIP.
The group as well warned politicians to keep the NSIP entirely out of their opposition campaigns as the NSIP is not and never a reward system or a political tool but rather a service to all Nigerians regardless of political affiliation.
“Available records at our disposal at the moment has it that the NSIP has been very beneficial to poor and vulnerable persons across Bauch State and Nigeria as a whole, in line with the good intentions of Mr. President to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty by the year 2030.
“The entire beneficiaries and participants across all the NSIP programmes are bona fide indigenes of their individual states. These beneficiaries and participants can be verified in an event of doubt of authenticity of extent of implementation. Payments to participants and beneficiaries are also made directly into their individual accounts. This is also can be verified.
“On the National Home-Grown School Feeding Programme (NHGSFP), all payments made to cooks, who are all employed and appointed by the Bauchi state government, are effected through their individual accounts. We have independently verified this as the same scenario as being implemented in Bauchi State but nationwide as well even without any discrimination or bias whatsoever. Similarly, the food materials aggregators are directly engaged and introduced to the Ministry by His Excellency, the Governor, and are also directly paid through their respective company accounts. In Bauchi State, there are 3,357 (three thousand, three hundred and fifty - seven) Primary schools with 444,099 (four hundred and forty - four thousand, and ninety- nine) pupils, 7,538 (seven thousand, five hundred and thirty - eight) cooks, and 12 (twelve) Food aggregators on the National Home-Grown School Feeding Programme. These are facts that are verified as they are in the public domain and the beneficiaries are available to testify they exist indeed, courtesy of the positive impact of the NSIP.
“In terms of the NPower programme; payments for N-Power beneficiaries that of course all verifiable indigenes of the State, are also made directly into the respective bank accounts of the NPower beneficiaries. The N-Power volunteers are attached to schools, healthcare centres and ADPs across the state. Under Batch A, there were 4,837 (four thousand, eight hundred and thirty-seven) graduate beneficiaries, Batch B had 8,041 (eight thousand, and forty-one) graduate beneficiaries, 1,667 (one thousand, six hundred and sixty-seven) N-Build non-graduate beneficiaries, and 339 (three hundred and thirty-nine) N-Knowledge beneficiaries. Currently, under the Batch C1, there are 14,535 (fourteen thousand, five hundred and thirty-five) graduate beneficiaries, 629 (six hundred and twenty-nine) N-Knowledge beneficiaries, 301 (three hundred and one) Mobile Money Agents and 175 (one hundred and seventy-five) Phone Repairs Technicians participating in Bauchi State. The same applies to the remaining States of the Federation including the FCT even though the numbers may not be the same but the programme policy implementation procedure is the same, it is effective and it is without any bias whatsoever.
“Under the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP), all beneficiaries receive the proceeds of their interest-free and collateral-free soft loans directly into their respective bank accounts. In Bauchi State alone, the GEEP 2.0 has already registered a total of 37,907 (thirty-seven thousand, nine hundred and seven) from all the 20 (twenty) LGAs of the State to participate under the MarketMoni, TraderMoni and FarmerMoni products of the NSIP. These are facts that can be verified by simply strolling through the streets of Bauchi State to inquire from the grassroots themselves. The same is the scenario of application of the NSIP nationwide. The figures may not be similar, definitely, but the procedure of programme policy implementation is the same nationwide, and testimonies abound as to how impactful this very category of the NSIP has been,” the Agents for Change group noted.
“On the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) cluster, the poor and vulnerable households are all identified and enrolled into the National Social Register (NSR) through an independent Community Based Targeting (CBT) strategy in each state. The NSR is generated from individual state social registers, which are domiciled at the various States Ministry of Planning, to this extent, Bauchi State is not an exception. From this NSR, the Conditional Cash Transfer beneficiaries are selected and enrolled into a National Beneficiary Register (NBR), which is used to make payments of N5,000 (five thousand Naira) monthly grants over a 2-year period. With emphasis in Bauchi State, available figures independently gathered by us showed that in Bauchi State alone, there are 75,110 (seventy-five thousand, one hundred and ten) poor and vulnerable households in the NSR, made up of 401,395 (four hundred and one thousand, three hundred and ninety-five) individuals, from which a total of 99,957 (ninety-nine thousand, nine hundred and fifty-seven) from all the 20 (twenty) LGAs are in the National Beneficiary Register (NBR) and are currently receiving monthly payments up to date. In terms of the situation in the rest part of the country as to how well the programme is being implemented, it is the same, it is going well, it is going impactful as the grassroots testified on their own when we went on fact-finding across the country recently.
“Grant for Rural Women which is a special project approved by Mr President and aimed to empower rural poor and vulnerable women through an advance of a one-off grant of N20,000 (twenty thousand Naira) to Rural Women with emphasis on engendering financial inclusion and, most specifically, developing and enhancing rural informal enterprises. According to recent facts and figures; in Bauchi State alone, a total of 8,671 (eight thousand, six hundred and seventy - one) women, all indigenes of Bauchi State benefitted. This programme is as well being carried out across all the parts of the country as we speak to you now. Facts and figures independently verified from the grassroots across the country, themselves.
“There is also the aspect of ‘engagement of community-based Independent Monitors (IMs)’, these Independent Monitors are all indigenes of their respective States. They are deliberately deployed to ensure effective implementation of the NSIP as designed. In Bauchi State, a total of 268 (two hundred and sixty-eight) IMs from all the 20 LGAs have been engaged, deployed and are regularly being paid the monthly N30,000 (thirty thousand Naira) stipend directly into their personal bank accounts. This is the same with the scenario of how the NSIP is functioning as to the aspect of the use and management of the welfare of the community-based Independent Monitors nationwide. These are facts that can be verified by any willing to find out by himself or herself just as we have done as a group.
“There is also the ‘Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) centers’ which are well stocked with requisite IT tools and equipment. These centres were established in selected public science and technical secondary schools to strategically engender and promote the study of science, engineering and technology, along with building the IT skills of students. In Bauchi State alone, 13 (thirteen) such adequately equipped STEM centres are currently functional, with 3 (three) fully trained STEM teachers in each of the schools.
“There is the ‘Alternate School Programme (ASP)’ that targets to reach 1,000,000 (one million) Out Of School Children (OOSC) nationwide in 2022, as approved by Mr. President, is currently being implemented. Bauchi State is fully captured, like all other States Nationwide.
The above verifiable statistics serve as ample and credible evidence that the NSIP is fully operational and functional across Nigeria, including Bauchi State,” the group further added.
In therefore backing the NSIP cordinators, having scored them high contrary to Governor Bala Mohammed’s January 20 statement which the group argued that he was possibly misled to have made during his KEEP launching; the group said it is important to stress the fact that poverty knows no political affiliation and hence attempting to take a political jab at the NSIP is not only wrong but a disservice and an unnecessary narrative of a distraction to the nation Nigeria.
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