The Federal Government, FG, of Nigeria announced on Tuesday the reinstatement of its suspended social investment programme, aimed at providing financial relief to 75 million citizens across 50 million households.
This initiative is a strategic move to alleviate the hardships faced by vulnerable groups within the country.

The cash transfer programme has been revamped to tackle fraud, ensuring that the aid reaches the intended beneficiaries. Wale Edun, the Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy, made this announcement during a ministerial briefing marking the first year of President Bola Tinubu’s administration in Abuja.

In January, President Tinubu suspended all programmes managed by the National Social Investment Programme Agency (NSIPA) to investigate alleged mismanagement.

This suspension also included the conditional cash transfer scheme, the N-Power programme, the government enterprise and empowerment programme, and the home-grown school feeding initiative.

Following a call from the House of Representatives to resume the suspended initiatives, President Tinubu established a Special Presidential Panel led by Minister Edun to review and audit the existing frameworks of these programmes. The aim is to enhance efficiency and ensure the integrity of the social investment efforts.

Minister Edun highlighted that the government is committed to providing support to poor Nigerians. “We have restarted the social investment program, providing direct payments to 75 million Nigerians in 50 million households,” he stated. Additionally, he noted that the government has improved access to credit, allocating N1 billion to consumer credit and issuing grants of 50,000 Naira to one million nano industries.

Nigeria’s inflation rate, particularly food inflation, has been a pressing issue. According to the National Bureau of Statistics, food inflation reached 40.53 percent in April 2024. This situation has been exacerbated by the removal of petrol subsidies, causing a significant rise in the prices of goods and services.

Minister Edun emphasized the critical role of agriculture in combating food insecurity and supporting economic growth. The government has allocated N200 billion for agricultural intervention programmes, aiming to boost food security and reduce inflation. Edun also mentioned ongoing discussions with development partners on the President’s emergency plan for food security.

To curb corruption, the government has initiated direct payments to contractors, suppliers, and vendors. This measure is designed to ensure the nation’s wealth is spent prudently and accountably. Minister Edun revealed plans to roll out an Economic Emergency Plan within the next six months, focusing on stabilizing the economy and fostering growth.

“The government is committed to counterbalancing the negative effects of economic reforms with interventions across the social spectrum,” Edun said. This includes setting up a fund to support housing construction and low-interest mortgages for the average Nigerian.

Minister Edun also highlighted efforts to attract investments, particularly in the oil and gas sector, and to promote the use of Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) and renewable energy sources. These initiatives are expected to bring in significant investments and enhance productivity.

Furthermore, Nigeria’s international credit rating has improved, with agencies like Moody’s and Fitch upgrading the country’s ratings to positive. This improvement, alongside the settlement of a $200 million shareholding with the Islamic Development Bank, has bolstered confidence in Nigeria’s financial stability.

Infrastructure development remains a key focus for the government. A new fund has been established to provide long-term support for housing projects and low-interest mortgages. Additionally, the government is addressing wage reforms, ensuring compliance with the national minimum wage laws.

Minister Edun reiterated that the challenges faced by the Nigerian economy are inherited from previous administrations. However, the current government is dedicated to resolving these issues and setting Nigeria on a path of sustainable growth.

“We are now in a situation where the revenue of the Federal Republic of Nigeria has been revamped and increased substantially,” he noted. This financial rejuvenation has positioned the government to comfortably service its debts and meet its financial obligations.

The reinstatement and overhaul of the social investment programme reflect the Nigerian government’s commitment to improving the welfare of its citizens, ensuring economic stability, and fostering growth through strategic reforms and investments.




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