By Mohammed Munirat Nasir
Federal government will continue its efforts at eradicating poverty in Zamfara state in fulfillment of its commitment at pulling over 100 million Nigerians out of poverty.
The Minister for Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajia Sadiya Umar Farouq gave this assurance while flagging-off the Grant for Rural Women Project and Symbolic Disbursement to beneficiaries on Tuesday in Gusau, Zamfara state capital.
The minister said since the inception of President Muhammadu Buhari’s Administration in 2015, the federal government has made it a priority to be protecting and promoting the plight of the poor and vulnerable in the country, which made the government to initiate the National Social Investment Programme (NSIP) the largest social protection programmes in Africa as a strategy for enhancing social inclusion.
Hajia Sadiya explained that the Conditional Cash Transfer [CCT] Programme which commenced in September 2016 was aimed at responding to deficiencies in capacity and lack of investment in human capital of poor and vulnerable households.
The minister said programme provides targeted monthly Base Cash Transfer of N5,000 to poor and vulnerable households with the sole aim of graduating them out of poverty.
“The Conditional cash transfer program which I recently launched in Zamfara State was intended to improve the socio-economic and livelihood of over 130,000 beneficiaries across 6 local government Areas of Anka, Bungudu ,Birnin Magaji, Kauran Namoda, Tsafe, and Talatar Mafara. Each of the beneficiaries received the Sum of 30,000 to 80,000 based on the dates each beneficiary was enrolled into the program, presently over N 6 billion have been disbursed in Zamfara state,” she said.
The minister said the N-Power programmes has catered for 10,346 beneficiaries in Zamfara, from inception to date while approximately 282,529 pupils in Zamfara State are being fed in 1,759 schools across the 14 LGAs with meals prepared by over 2000 cooks in the free school feeding programme.
She said the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP) a flagship programme of the FG that has three prominent products which include TraderMoni, MarketMoni and FarmerMoni which are spread across 2,678 Clusters to stimulate economic activity has provided loans to 48,503 individuals in Zamfara State.
Hajia Sadiya said the National Emergency Management Agency and the National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons have provided relief interventions after a fire outbreak to Gusau local government area and the distribution of drugs, food and non-food items in Gusau, Anka, Maradun, Shinkafi and Zumi local government areas of the state.
Zamfara state governor Dr Bello Mohammed Matawalle commended the federal government for its intervention programmes which he said tallies with that of his administration’s effort to provide succor for the less privileged.
Matwalle represented by the secretary to the State Government [SSG] Alhaji Bala Bello ureged the federal government to release the N10 billion special intervention funds which it promised as support for victims of Armed Banditry and flood disasters in the State.
Matawalle said Zamfara state is one of the frontline States in the Northern part of the country with cases of Armed Banditry, kidnappings, cattle rustling and flood disasters where many people were rendered homeless, hence the need for the Federal Government to Release the N10 Billion Naira special intervention funds for immediate resettlement and assistance to the victims in order to cushion their hardships.
The Governor also called on the Federal Government to Construct the Dansadau/ Birnin-Gwari/ Minna Federal road cutting through Zamfara, Kaduna and Niger States as part of measures to obstruct the advantage used by armed bandits.