The Nigerian government has commenced plans to start the payment of N5,000 monthly allowance for unemployed and vulnerable Nigerians as from 2016.
According to The Punch, the federal government had put in place some top officials with the task of ascertaining the number of the unemployed youths, who would benefit from the scheme, as steps have been taken to capture the free school feeding programme as indicated in the 2016 budget.
A top government official, who craved anonymity, disclosed that the compilation of data was necessary in order to ensure that the programme was not sabotaged.
“You also know that if not properly handled, politicians will hijack the scheme and it will become a means of settling their constituents, whether they qualify to benefit from it or not.
This is why the government will come up with data on the beneficiaries very soon,” the official said.
The official further revealed that it was only when a decision had been reached on the number of people that would benefit from the scheme that the government would have an idea of how much it would spend on the programme.
In the same vein, the Senior Special Assistant to the Vice-President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Laolu Akande, confirmed that work was ongoing on the identification of beneficiaries.
“Work is ongoing on various aspects of the implementation of that social investment plan, including the identification of those that will benefit from it. Very soon, we shall be concluding work on that; that is a very important aspect of the programme.
“The plan of the government is to start as much as possible in the area of social investment, and conditional cash transfer is part of it.
“It is the plan of the government to explore how to start this with the 2016 budget.” He added.