[From INI BILLIE, Uyo]
Federal Government has released over N993 million to 24,929 vulnerable households in Akwa Ibom State under the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) programme.
The nine benefitting local governments areas include Eastern Obolo, Ikono, Mkpat Enin, Nsit Atai, Nsit Ubium, Onna, Oruk Anam, Ukanafun and Uruan.
Speaking on Tuesday in Uyo during the disbursement/flag off of the scheme at Holy Child Primary School, Nung Udoe Ntak, Ikono local government area, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Farouq said the selected local government areas represented 30 percent of the council areas in the state.
Farouq stated that each of the beneficiaries will receive between N30,000 and N40,000, and apologized for the delay in the disbursement of the monies to beneficiaries.
She explained that the programme is a component of the social protection scheme of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration aimed at taking 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in 10 years.
”Apart from the war against corruption, President Buhari has prioritized social protection interventions to pull 100 million people out of poverty over the course of 10 years.
“The payment cycle could have started in September 2019, but issues faced with the payment service provider delayed payment has now been resolved,” She said.
The Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Welfare, Dr. Ini Adiakpan who commended the gesture of the Federal Government, urged the beneficiaries to make judicious use of the money.
She said, ”the benefits of implementing the Conditional Cash Transfer intervention in Nigeria has been enormous especially in health, nutrition and education. These are very critical areas for which every responsible government must concern itself.
”Akwa Ibom state keyed into the programme in the middle of 2019 with nine pilot local government areas. The State Operating Coordinating Unit (SUCO) enumerated about 126, 000 households with almost 80,000 making the beneficiaries list, and we are grateful that today about 24,929 are the first set of beneficiaries”.
One of the beneficiaries, Mrs. Christiana Umoh expressed gratitude to the Federal Government saying, ” the money will help me feed myself and start business to support my family”.
Governor Udom Emmanuel who was represented by his deputy, Mr Moses Ekpo, had earlier received the Minister at the Government House, during which he thanked President Buhari for initiating the programme.