FCT Minister of State, Dr. Ramatu Tijjani Aliyu, has flagged off grants for 5, 000 rural women in the nation's capital as part of measures to win the war against acute poverty especially amongst rural women in the country.

Performing the symbolic disbursement of one-off grant to rural and semi-urban women in the Federal Capital Territory, the minister commended President Muhammadu Buhari for his decision to initiate the National Social Investment Programme (NSIP) as a strategy for enhancing social inclusion and a demonstration of his efforts to bring succour and hope to the poorest of the poor and vulnerable households in Nigeria.

Aliyu revealed that the symbolic disbursement was to signal the start of the grant for rural women empowerment project, that would pay a one-off grant of N20,000 each to 5,000 beneficiaries in the six Area Councils of the FCT.

She added that the exercise would continue in line with the plans already put in place by the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development (FMHDSD), until all the beneficiaries selected via a participatory community-centric selection process, have received the grants.

According to her, "You will agree with me that the launch of this programme is a bold statement that the government is reiterating the readiness to do all that is necessary to join the comity of nations to fight the global economic downturn and to put in place the needed shocks to withstand any future eventualities. The development thrust being to fuel economic recovery from the bottom up".

While commending the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development for the zeal and determination towards the realisation of this people-oriented programme, the minister affirmed that the FCT Administration was convinced of its role to provide the right environment for this to happen within the FCT and was committed to supporting the FMHDSD, and indeed all development actors, to realise this objective.

Earlier in her remarks, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajia Sadiya Umar Farouq, said the grant was expected to increase income and productive assets of target beneficiaries.

The minister also noted that the NSIP was one of the largest social protection programmes in Africa with over $1billion earmarked annually to cause positive change in the lives of the poorest and most vulnerable in the country, stressing that since its introduction in 2016, the prorgramme has impacted positively on the lives of the poor and vulnerable in Nigeria.

While calling on the beneficiaries of this programme to make good use of the grant to generally contribute towards improving their living standard, she revealed that over 12 million households have benefitted from NSIP interventions in the last 5 years.

Austine Elemue
S.A Media To FCT Minister of State


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