By Akeem Abas
The Federal Government has begun efforts aimed at lifting 40 million Nigerians out of poverty in the next two years through the Nigeria COVID-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus (NG-CARES).
The National Coordinator, NG-CARES Programme, Mr Abdulkarim Obaje, made the disclosure at the closing of a week-long workshop in Ibadan.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the advance training workshop, held in Ibadan, had 440 participants from across the 36 states and Federal Capital Territory (FCT) in attendance.
Among the participants are: Monitoring and Evaluation Officers, Heads of Delivery in states and State Care Coordinating Units across the country.
NAN reports that the NG-CARES programme seeks to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 crises on the livelihood of poor individuals, farmers, vulnerable households, communities as well as owners of micro and small enterprises.
Obaje said that the NG-CARES was the initiative of the federal government, with the support of World Bank and active participation of the 36 state governors.
He expressed confidence that the programme would impact on the poverty situation in the country, lifting no fewer than 40 million Nigerians directly and indirectly.
“This modest support should have direct impact on about eight to 10 million Nigerians and indirectly impact on 20 to 30 million people.
“We are very confident that this will impact on the poverty situation in Nigeria after two years,” he said.
Obaje said that the programme would be implemented along 11 Disbursement Linked Indicators (DLIs), starting from social transfer to the aged, the poor and the vulnerable.
He said that it would also involve labour-intensive work fare to livelihood grant, basic services and food security to micro and small-scale enterprises spread across 11 DLIs.
According to him, the result from the workshop reveals that states are now fully prepared to receive Independent Verification Agents (IVAs).
Also, the Chairman, Federal Cares Technical Committee of NG-CARES Programme, Mr Aso Vakporaye, said that the exercise was not a new package, adding that it was part of government’s sustainable development agenda.
“So, it was when COVID-19 came that everybody realised that if we don’t act now, it isn’t going to be good enough.
“All the major stakeholders then came together to fashion out this agenda, with the directive from the presidency,” he said. (NAN)