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FG Begins Disbursement Of N5,000 To 1m Nigerians

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The Federal Government, yesterday, began the disbursement of N5,000 to one million indigent Nigerians across the country.
But the beneficiaries of the money said to be from the Conditional Cash Transfer Scheme, were paid N20,000 each covering four months.
The action was in line with a recent directive by President Muhammadu Buhari that the conditional cash transfers for the next two months be paid immediately to beneficiaries.
The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajiya Sadiya Farouq, performed the disbursement at Kwali Local Government Council of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, to over 190 beneficiaries.
“As we know, the CCT is for poor and vulnerable households in the country.
“Beneficiaries are entitled to N5, 000 every month; however, the payment of N20, 000 now to each beneficiary is for four mouths.
“It is going to happen all over the country, but we are starting with FCT, Lagos and Ogun. These are the frontline states. Other states will follow.
“With the current pandemic and circumstances on ground, this amount will go a long way to support the families in their daily lives.
“Today, we are giving out N20, 000 each to about 190 beneficiaries in Kwali Area Councils. The total beneficiaries in FCT are 5, 000,’’ Farouq said.
The minister further said that the beneficiaries were chosen without any form of bias, adding that political party affiliation was never a criterion for selection of beneficiaries.
“The exercise commenced about five years ago, and it is geared towards supporting the poor and vulnerable households of our society,” the minister said while carrying out the exercise.
She added: “We give them monthly stipends of N5,000 every month and now that we have these restrictions, Mr President has directed that we give them two months advance payment and we are here today to carry out that directive of paying the two months advance payment.
“We have over a million people across the country. For the FCT and this particular area council, we are giving about 5,000 households in this area.”
Describing the process leading to the identification of beneficiaries as rigorous, she said: “It is a very long process and many people like religious leaders, community leaders and different groups all came together to identify poorest and vulnerable households in their community.”
Also speaking, the National Programme Coordinator for the Conditional Cash Transfer Programme, Dr. Temitope Sinkaiye, said the additional 1million beneficiaries would be added to the programme before the end of the year.
Explaining how the programme works and how it has impacted beneficiaries, Sinkaiye said: “The process of identification is a long process that involves community members themselves identifying those who are poor and vulnerable in their sight. So, the team moves from community to community and the community members determine what poverty means in their village and those who fall within their definition of poverty.
“Here, we are not talking about book or academic definition, we are talking of community members themselves deciding what poverty means and then identify people who by their perception fall into the category and then we collect the names from the community.”
On the impact of the cash, she said: “It has improved their livelihoods because they are now able to send their children to schools, they can feed with a better diet, they can attend clinics and for some communities where water is their problem, they have dug wells and renovated health centres. Some communities have also put up a classroom for their children because the children used to go to neighbouring communities to access education.
“Beyond the money, this programme also trains them on how to be self-sustaining, how to take care of their hygiene, we teach them on nutrition, environmental sanitation, and others. So, it is a full package for the households.”
On the number of people that have benefitted from the programme, she said: ‘The number of people currently on our register is 1.2million and we are going to enroll into the programme, another 1million for this year.”
One of the beneficiaries, Mrs Serah Gadaga, a mother of two, said she was happy about the payment.
“The payment for January, February, March and April together which amounts to N20, 000, will help in boosting my petty business, settling children school fees and meeting up other needs of the family.
“May God give the Federal Government the resources to sustain and continue this programme to help the poor people in the country,’’ Gadaga said.

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Banigo Felicitates With Justice Wike On Her Birthday

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Rivers State Deputy Governor, Dr. Mrs. Ipalibo Harry Banigo has felicitated with the wife of the State Chief Executive Hon. Justice Eberechi Suzzette Nyesom Wike as she celebrates her birthday on Saturday, 23rd May, 2020.

 

In a statement from the Government House in Port Harcourt on Friday, 23rd May 2020, Dr. Banigo described Hon. Justice Wike as a humane and God fearing woman who is a great pillar of strength to our amiable Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike.

 

While wishing her many happy returns the Deputy Governor prayed the Almighty God to continue to protect and bless Hon. Justice Eberechi Suzzette Nyesom Wike.

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Former Nigeria President Jonathan Loses Foster Dad.

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The family of former Nigerian President,Goodluck Jonathan and the Otuoke community of Ogbia Local Government Area of Bayelsa state has been thrown into mourning as the News of the sudden demise of Chief Nitabai Inegite,the former president’s foster father reached them.

Though no official reports have reached us as to the cause of his death,The Tide learnt that the septuagenerian has been briefly ill shortly before his demise.
The former President, who visited the residence of his late foster father the early hours of Wednesday has not made any official statement regarding funeral arrangement.
Chief Inegite,popularly called ‘holy’ by his admirers and friends was initially reported to have been responding to treatment in an undisclosed health facility where his health later deteriorated before finally giving up  the ghost  at about 11:00 pm,Tuesday 19th day of May,2020.
You would recall that the late Chief Nitabai Inegite was twice reported to have been kidnapped some time between 2014 and 2016 respectively.
The late former president’s foster father was survived by his wife,biological children,grand children and numerous relatives.
By Ariwera Ibibo-Howells, Yenagoa.
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Nigerian Senate Considers Bill For Ensure Food Security

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…seeks establishment of Food Reserve Agency
The Nigerian Senate, in a seemingly proactive stop to forestall anticipated food shortfall  in the country ,  on Tuesday, commenced legislative work on a critical bill to ensure food security in Nigeria through  the establishment of  Food Reserve Agency to plan and implement policies for adequate food production and storage.
The bill  sponsored  by Senator Abdullahi Adamu (Nasarawa West), scaled second reading at plenary , on Tuesday.
Leading debate on the bill, Senator Adamu noted that Nigeria as a nation needs to develop its Agricultural sector to ensure not only alternate economy but also food security .
He further emphasised that this requires  an vibral  agency to drive all attending policies for the growth and sustainability of the sector.
According to the lawmaker, the Food Reserve agency when established, would be responsible for storing food grains and other food commodities for strategic purposes.
His words “Agriculture plays a pivotal role in the development and growth of every nation. Any country seeking to diversify its economy, alleviate poverty, create jobs and ensure food security should prioritize agriculture.
“Nigeria recognizing the important role Agriculture plays has made efforts to place the sector at the fore by introducing different intervention programmes and policies backed by enabling laws.
“A further step to be taken to ensure food security in our country at all times is to formulate enabling laws that will address food insecurity,”
“The agency will implement the overall National Food Reserve Policy to ensure a reliable supply of designated commodities in the country.”
The lawmaker recalled that, “the recent mandate of the President during the COVID-19 pandemic to distribute 70,000 metric tons of grains from the Grains Reserves shows clearly how important it is for a country to have a Food Reserve Agency.”
 Stressing the importance of food security ,he linked the current Covid 19 situation and its Nigeria’s readiness to  ensure the nation don’t wind up in food crises as well.
According to Senator Adamu, with the Agency in place, Nigeria will be taking the right step in the right direction as replicated in other African countries such as Zambia and Tanzania.
“With the existence of the Agency, emergency food crises will be taken care of especially in the period of a pandemic.
“There will also be a reduction in post-harvest losses as silos, warehouses, equipment, ancillary facilities and other suitable storage facilities will be installed and maintained.”  the Senator explained.
After the debate, the President of  the Senate, Senator Ahmad Lawan referred the bill to the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development chaired by the sponsor of the bill Adsmu Abdullahi.
The Committee  is given four weeks  to report back to the Senate.
Nneka Amaechi-Nnadi.
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