The federal government has been asked to ensure transparency in the disbursement of the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) funds to selected needy homes across the country.
The Nigerian government last week announced fresh plans to distribute cash to the poorest households mapped out across the 36 states.
In a statement issued last Tuesday, Human, Environmental and Leadership Prevalent Centres (HELP Centres) tasked the federal government to ensure the cash distribution is guided by digital dashboard to avoid manipulations by vested interests.
The statement signed by the group Chairman, Azeez Tajudeen, however, commended the federal government for the initiative.
He said the on ongoing disbursement of the CCT funds to the poorest of the poor households across the country would meet basic need of millions of vulnerable families in the country whose conditions have been compounded by the global lockdown.
The National Cash Transfer Office (NCTO) under the National Social Investment Programme (NSIP) through its twitter handle on April 4 said from last Monday, cash would be distributed to indigent families spread across 18 states.
The affected states are Niger, Osun, Plateau, Kwara, Kogi, Benue, Gombe, Adamawa, Taraba, Kaduna, Cross River, Kano, River, Jigawa, Ekiti, Oyo, Imo and Bauchi.
Beneficiaries are expected to start collecting their CCT funds as the disbursement has kicked off in some states, including the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
HELP Centre said the ongoing CCT disbursement is not a new intervention programme specifically designed to relieve the effect of COVID-19 pandemic in the country, neither is it an international donors’ support, but one of the existing programmes carved out from the $322.5 million Sani Abacha loot proceeds as a poverty intervention programme.
Tajudeen said: “Other areas covered by the Abacha loots are National Home Grown School Feeding Programme, N-Power, GEEP-Enterprises and Empowerment Programme among others.”
He said the clarification was necessary in order to guide the public as some Nigerians are being mis-informed as if the disbursement was solely meant for COVID-19 palliative, adding that it is an outstanding transfer of CCT funds due for the payment.
“The Federal Government of Nigeria through Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development is charged to be more transparent on the course of disbursement because the poor beneficial households are critically in need of this fund due to the serious effects of the ongoing COVID-19 lockdown in some states, including FCT,” Tajudeen, whose organisation receives technical support from Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA Resource Centre) Nigeria’s leading anti-corruption group, said.