An NGO, Protest to Power Movement/Citizens Action to Take Back Nigeria, says the Federal Government’s Social Investment Programme aimed at providing N5,000 to one million indigent families will assist in boosting the economy.
Mr Jaye Gaskia, the National Coordinator of the organisation, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Wednesday that the idea was a welcome development.
Gaskia said N5,000 to one million indigent households monthly is N5 billion monthly, and N60 billion annually.
“This is huge, it is money that if well spent and appropriately targeted can help to reflate the economy, and spur growth.
“This is why we welcomed the idea of Social Investment in the first place.
“You only need to go to Latin America, the only continent to have actually succeeded in halving poverty and dramatically reducing inequality, to see the result of social investment that is well articulated,” he said.
Gaskia, however stressed the need in ensuring that the beneficiaries were the real people it was meant for the desired result.
Gaskia urged the Federal Government to put in places teams, processes, mechanisms and structures that would develop and administer the criteria for selecting both beneficiaries and participating financial institutions and systems.
According to him, government needs to register and assess beneficiaries.
“It needs to provide incentives to ensure that the funds are utilised in a manner that benefits the economy – go into purchase of locally made/manufactured goods and services for instance.
“It needs to involve several agencies of government at Federal and State levels and have a coordination mechanism in place for this collaboration,’’he said.
The coordinator stressed the need to include the private sector and actually give preference to local private sector to put in place a mechanism for monitoring and evaluation.
“Government needs to ensure that all of these processes take place in the open, and that we do not have a situation where everything is wrapped in secrecy,’’ he said.
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