The presidency recently disclosed that one million poverty-stricken Nigerians will be given N5,000 ($25.13) every month for sustenance. It also explained why the much anticipated change agenda is taking time to manifest, just as it firmly rejected the insinuations that poverty and lack are products of the change mantra, describing such claim as opposition criticism that erroneous and misplaced.
The presidential spokesman noted that the president understands the pain and the cries of the citizens of this country and that he is having sleepless nights on how to make their lives better. Shehu said, “Contrary to assertions by a faction of the opposition Conference of Nigerian Political Parties (CNPP), the president’s energy and focus are on changing the life of Nigerians, with a view to making it better than he met it.
He then disclosed ongoing plans for change to include those for social investment.
“For example, one million poor and vulnerable Nigerians will soon receive monthly payments of N5,000 to allow them live decently,” he said, noting that the programme was designed to recognize the need for ordinary, poor Nigerians to also benefit from the resources of the country.
“President Buhari believes that the resources of our country should be spent also on the vast majority of our people who are poor and vulnerable, and not squandered by government officials or the elite,” he stated.
Shehu pointed out that this social investment plan is already provided for in the 2016 Budget and that the World Bank had begun conducting a social register on poor and vulnerable people in Nigeria in the four poorest communities in the four poorest local government areas.
He said; “About seven to eight states have been completed already. Now the Presidency is working with the World Bank and the Bill Gates Foundation on how to identify the people to be paid the N5,000 and how they will be paid.
“This is the first time that the federal government of this country will be spending this much on social welfare for poor, bearing in mind that the money will go directly to the beneficiaries.”