By Deborah Christopher
The minister, federal ministry of humanitarian affairs, disaster management and social Development Hajiya Umar Farouq disclosed on Monday that president Muhammadu Buhari has approved the expansion of the National social investment programme (NSIP), beneficiaries, to feed additional 5million school children.
Also extending the school feeding programme in the country to Almajiri schools, traders, farmers, graduates and others
The president similarly approved expansion of the National Social Investment Programmes (NSIPs) to accommodate more traders, graduates, farmers, among others.
Farouq made this known in Abuja, during the 4th Annual Review of the National Home Grown School Feeding Programme, NHGSFP.
The NSIP expansion of the NHGSFP will include additional five million pupils, “including children in non-conventional educational settings.”
Farouq expressed that it is with great pleasure that she’s informing all about the progress they’ve made as a result of heeding to recommendations and this has made them exceed expectations.
She also stated that since the programmes were transferred to the ministry, they have had continuous engagements with all state programme officials and have assigned desk officers to each of the clusters within the ministry, whom they’ve been liaising with for many months.
“We have continued to engage and collaborate with state governors on the implementation of the programme. The ministry is also working with federal and state MDAs, INGOs and NGOs to evolve policies that would support the institutionalisation of the social investment programs in the nation.
Farouq stated that, “the N-Power programme will create jobs for one million beneficiaries, the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programmes (GEEP) programme will provide loans to an additional one million traders, farmers and market people, while the social register is also being expanded to accommodate an additional one million households.”
She also said “The National Home Grown School Feeding Program is an important intervention because of the multiple wins it is capable of delivering. It is a vehicle for reducing hunger, promoting educational gains, health status improvement and economic stimulation. Such Programmes are recognized as positive indicators for Countries who are on track to achieve sustainable development. The long term benefits to our children and the future of the Nation cannot be over emphasized. Thus we must resolve to remain steadfast in ensuring that this program reaches its objective and improves the lives of its beneficiaries.
“We have restructured the GEEP program and other NSIPs to align them with our mandate of providing fair, focused social inclusion programmes to the vulnerable in Nigeria. Furthermore, the FCT has been included in the school feeding programme, while Kwara state is set to commence feeding in a few months time. The NHGSFP will soon launch a capacity building exercise for vendors and enumeration of all beneficiaries on the programme.
“Plans have been concluded for the exit and transition of the N-Power batch A & B through the creation of the NEXIT portal, which would allow those who choose to sign up to access other government empowerment opportunities. A beneficiary management system for the NSIPs is expected to be deployed in 2021, which would have the capacity to manage payments, address grievances and improve dissemination of information Additionally, you are aware that Mr President has approved the expansion of the NSIPs, as part of his vision to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in the next 10 years.
“The NHGSFP is to reach an additional 5 million pupils including children in non-conventional educational settings. The N-Power programme is to create jobs for a total of one million beneficiaries. The GEEP programme will provide loans to an additional one million traders, farmers and market people; the social register is also being expanded to accommodate an additional 1 million households.
“It is therefore safe to say that we have been working tirelessly to ensure that vulnerable Nigerians are brought into the Federal Governments social protection umbrella, which seeks to support, empower and level the playing field so that they are better equipped to handle economic and social shocks, while contributing their quota to society and to the betterment of our great Nation.
“The Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development remains committed to providing the necessary support and the enabling environment for social protection and inclusion policies to grow and take root in the fabric of our Nation so that future generations will thrive and succeed in a growingly competitive world.
“The COVID-19 pandemic and its various ramifications has forced each of us to confront worst case scenarios, but rather than dampen our spirits, I believe that we have only become stronger in our resolve to protect those in need”.