The Federal Government on Tuesday concluded payment of four months arrears of Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) to 11,617 vulnerable people in Imo.
The beneficiaries were drawn from the national social register of the National Social Safety-Net Coordinating Office (NASSCO), a social investment program under the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that the beneficiaries were enlisted from nine pilot Local Governments in Imo, with no fewer than 11,617 beneficiaries.
The beneficiaries were given N20,000 each to clear the backlog of four months arrears of 2020.
Mrs Christina Ude, Special Adviser to Gov. Hope Uzodimma on Sustainable Development Goal and Humanitarian Services, after inspecting the program, expressed satisfaction with the success and compliance recorded.
Ude, also the focal person of the Social Intervention Program (SIP) in Imo, advised the beneficiaries to be judicious and reasonable while investing the money in order to meet the programme’s aim of taking the vulnerable people out of poverty.
She urged Imo people to have confidence in the present leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari and Uzodimma, adding that more people would be lifted out of poverty.
The programme’s Head of Unit in Imo, Mr Joseph Odoemenam in an interview with NAN, said the payment of the four months arrears covered September to December 2020.
“The Federal Government has made true, the promise of the Minister of Humanitarian Services, Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajia Sadiya Umar- Farouq, who declared that the backlog of the beneficiaries’ stipends would be deflated in the nearest future.
“A breakdown of payment of the nine pilot LGAs and their corresponding number of beneficiaries is as follows:, Ahiazu Mbaise 625, Ikeduru 2,486, Aboh Mbaise 1,666, Isiala Mbano 905.
“Others are Okigwe LGA 2,089, Onuimo 811, Ideato South 1,998, Ideato North 694, Nkwere 343, amounting to a total of 11, 617 beneficiaries,” he said.
Some of the beneficiaries who spoke to NAN after receiving the money expressed joy over the gesture and promised to make good use of the stipend in line with the aims and objectives of the programme.
A widow, Mrs Agnes Anyawu from Isiala-Mbano LGA said: “This is the first of its kind among successive government programmes.
“This gesture is a clear indication that there is still hope for the nation, may God bless all the people who facilitated this.”
Another beneficiary from the Onuimo council area, Mr Amarachi Nwaehiri, assured Federal Government that he would spend the money to achieve the aim of the programme.
“I’m sure that government wants the best for the vulnerable and poor people in the society, I’m surprised but very happy with this kind of gesture,” he said.