FG Reinstates 48,000 Cash Transfer Beneficiaries in Nasarawa

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ABDULLAHI SULE

Igbawase Ukumba in Lafia

The federal government has reinstated 48,000 beneficiaries of the Conditional Cash Transfer scheme who were suspended in Nasarawa State, about two years ago.

The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Ms. Sadiya Umar Faruk disclosed this at a meeting with Nasarawa State Governor, Alhaji Abdullahi Sule in Lafia yesterday.

At the meeting, the minister explained the decision of the federal government to lift the suspension, promising that additional indigent citizens in the state would be registered.

President Muhammadu Buhari had initiated the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) programs with a view to reducing poverty by making welfare programs conditional upon the receivers’ actions.

Since the programme commenced, the federal government said an estimated 5,433,394 Nigerians are benefiting from the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) programme.

But at the meeting, the minister said the directive to lift the suspension “is a fall out of a meeting with the governor.”

She said Nasarawa State, with 48,000 beneficiaries of the Conditional Cash Transfer Scheme, was suspended along with the state Operations Coordinating Unit (SOCU) on August 5. This was due to fraudulent activities of officials of the program in some local government areas in 2018.

“Following the suspension, Governor Sule promptly set up an investigative committee on August 17 headed by a former Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Timothy Anjide. The committee has since submitted its report.”

The minister, also, gave assurance that the cash transfer intervention programme in Nasarawa State would soon be expanded to cover more local government areas other than the original six local councils.

The federal government had directed the termination of contracts with two payment service providers (PSP) over delays in its implementation of the conditional cash transfer policy.

This directive, which was shared via a tweet post, was given by the minister on April 14.

The two PSPs were accused of inability to meet up with their contractual agreements, thereby causing cash transfer delays to 4 states namely Bayelsa, Akwa Ibom, Abia, and Zamfara.