By Patience Ogbodo,
The Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development has disbursed an N20,000 cash grant to 4,253 results in the Federal Government’s Grant for Vulnerable Groups (GVG) programme in Enugu State.
The ministry also rolled out the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP 2.0) for poor enterprising Nigerians in Enugu State under the Market Moni, Trader Moni and Farmer Moni among other social intervention schemes.
Sadiya Farouq, Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, stated this on Friday while unveiling National Social Investment Programmes (NSIP) meant to pull out millions of Nigerians living in Enugu State out of poverty.
Farouq, who was represented by Mrs Nkechi Onwukwe, Director of Special Needs in the ministry, called for a proper synergy and every stakeholder playing their part in the implementation of the NSIP in the state.
According to her, with everybody playing their part it is our belief that the target beneficiaries and many more citizens of the state will be on their way out of poverty to prosperity.
“We will, by the grace of God, as a nation, remain on track of lifting N100 million Nigerians out of poverty by 2030 as designed by President Muhammadu Buhari,” she said.
The minister noted that the “NSIP is a programme of the Federal Government under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari” designed to specifically give a lifting hand to the poorest and vulnerable citizens in the country.
She said that the NSIP programme was being implemented in close partnerships with state governments.
She said: “Our target in Enugu State is to disburse the GVG grant to 4,253 beneficiaries across the 17 Local Government Areas in the state. It is worthy noting that 70 per cent of these beneficiaries must be women, while the remaining 30 per cent is for youths.
“Mr President has further directed that at least 15 per cent of the total number of beneficiaries must specifically be allocated to citizens with special needs, including Persons With Disabilities (PWD) and senior citizens (the elderly) in the state.
“Your Excellency, distinguished guests, in line with President Buhari’s commitment to fight poverty from all angles, wish to inform you that l am here with my team to also flag-off the following programmes: Roll-Out the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP 2.0).”
The minister explained that the GEEP was a programme designed by President Buhari administration for vulnerable and low-income Nigerians who are involved in some sort of commercial activity/capacity but had never had the opportunity to access loans.
She noted that it was meant to give priority to the most vulnerable in our society e.g. widows, youth, disabled and the displaced amongst others.
“GEEP is captured in three signature schemes namely the Trader-Moni loan of N50,000, targeted towards uplifting under-privileged and marginalized youths between the ages of 18-40 years in Nigeria; Market-Moni an empowerment programme designed for underprivileged and marginalised women in our society specifically targeted towards.
“Female-headed households e.g. widows, divorcees amongst other vulnerable groups, then the Farmer-Moni loan scheme which is equally designed to provide agricultural inputs worth up to a maximum of N300,000 to rural farmers.
“The GEEP has been restructured to have a top-bottom representation from the Federal, State and Local Government levels respectively.
“In the first phase of GEEP programme about 1,142,783 potential beneficiaries were registered by the COMO’s across the 774 LGAs in Nigeria out of which 23,699 potential beneficiaries were registered in Enugu State across the 17 LGAs after which verification was done about 1,256 beneficiaries were selected.
“These selected beneficiaries are currently undergoing enumeration and today I have gracefully come to roll-out the programme in Enugu State. Hence, successful beneficiaries of the GEEP programme will start receiving credit alerts from Access Bank today by God’s grace.”
She said that the ministry also flagged off the National Sensitization Exercise for the National Home Grown School Feeding Programme (NHGSFP), which seeks to educate communities and stakeholders on the proper and more effective implementation of the NHGSFP.
“Under the NHGSPP, 9.9 million children are currently being fed nationwide, and President Buhari has approved that the programme is expanded by another 5 million children,” he said.
Speaking, Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi pledged the commitment of the state government in complementing the Federal Government and the ministry’s efforts in fighting poverty in the state and country in general.
Ugwuanyi, who was represented by the state’s focal person on the NSIP programme, Dr Innocent Ogbonnaya, appreciated President Muhammadu Buhari for enlisting the residents of the state as beneficiaries of the NSIP since 2016.
Mr Onyebuchi Mbah, a beneficiary of the GVG programme, thanked the Federal Government for the N20,000 cash given to him and his family, adding that it would go a long to ameliorate the hardship in his family.
Mbah, who is physically challenged, said: “I appreciate the Federal Government and thank God for this grant coming at a very challenging time for me and my family”.