Social security scheme begins in Nigeria

Timothy Choji, Abuja

The Nigerian Government will commence community mobilisation for the creation of the Register in more States soon, to expand the scope and reach of the Conditional Cash Transfer across the country.

The Nigerian government has commenced the payment of five thousand Naira monthly stipend to the poor and most vulnerable. This is part of its determined efforts to touch the lives of Nigerians positively.

The payment which has commenced in nine States is done through the Conditional Cash Transfer CCT, one of government’s Social Investment Programmes.

Under the CCT, one million Nigerians will receive N5,000 monthly payments as a form of social safety net for the poorest and most vulnerable, as budgeted for in the 2016 Budget.

In the first batch that commenced last week, nine States were covered, and many of the beneficiaries had already reported receiving their first payments by Friday December 30, 2016.

According to a statement from the presidency, “Beneficiaries in Borno, Kwara and Bauchi States have started receiving the money.”

The other States in the first batch are Cross Rivers, Niger, Kogi, Oyo, Ogun and Ekiti States.

Criteria
It says nine pilot States were chosen because they have an existing Social Register that successfully identified the most vulnerable and poorest Nigerians through a tried and tested community based targeting (CBT) method working with the World Bank.

”However, other States have already begun developing their Social Registers and would be included in subsequent phases of the CCT implementation,” the statement said.

Plateau, Jigawa, Adamawa, Anambra, Benue, Enugu, Katsina & Taraba  States have so far complied with the stipulated framework provided and are set for the community based targeting method for the development of their Social Register within their jurisdictions.

These States are to be followed by Delta, Gombe, Kaduna, Kano, Imo and Ogun States.

“Once the community mobilization, identification and selection processes are completed, the information garnered from the poorest households would be entered onto the Social Register in the states and the National Register at the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System NIBSS, after which the cash transfers would be disbursed to the beneficiaries,” Part of the statement read.

With the commencement of the CCT, the Buhari led-government is now implementing four of the Social Investment Programme.

Besides the CCT, others are the N-Power Volunteer Corps designed to hire half a million unemployed graduates which has now engaged 200,000, the National Homegrown School Feeding Programme now running in three states and the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme, (GEEP), under which soft loans ranging fromN10, 000 to N100, 000 have been designed for artisans, traders, market women among others.

Sammie