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Criticism, applause trail FG’s proposed N5000 to indigent Nigerians

The Federal Government has come under fire by critics over its plans to pay one million poor and vulnerable individuals N5,000 monthly each for six months through the Covid-19 Cash Transfer project.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo had on Tuesday at the launch of the Covid-19 Rapid Response Registration (RRR) Cash transfer project said the initiative would help to alleviate poverty and improve the livelihoods of the beneficiaries.

Reacting to the proposed project, a human rights activist, Osazee Edigin advised the government to utilise the money earmarked for the intervention programme to improve basic amenities, including electricity, roads, hospitals which would go a long way to improve the standard of living for all Nigerians.

He said over the years intervention programmes initiated by the government at all levels have always been devoid of integrity and lacks accountability.

Edigin, who made the submissions in Benin City, said government cannot brag of an organised collection of data to differentiate indigent persons from others.

“Governments at all levels have not demonstrated the resources in cushioning the effects of Covid-19 on citizens through their intervention programmes. There is nothing new expected to come out from this because it is another round of embezzlement,” Edigin said.

However, David Ugolor, the executive director of African Network for Environment and Economic Justice (ANEEJ), commended the initiative, urging the government to ensure the money get to the beneficiaries so as to achieve the target.

He stressed that “We need to continue to appeal to the government to allow some level of transparency and consistency in the disbursement”.

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