Sadiya Umar Farouq
The Federal Government, on Wednesday said disbursement of N20,000 grants to poor Nigerians under the Grants for Vulnerable Groups programme begun yesterday (Thursday).
It said the programme would be kick-started in the Federal Capital Territory before progressing to the 36 states of the federation, adding that the initiative was done through the National Social Investment Programme.
The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Farouq, disclosed this in Abuja at a parley with stakeholders on the implementation of the GVG programme.
“We shall be flagging off disbursement in FCT on Thursday, July 28, 2022 and thereafter, the programme will be rolled out in all 36 states and FCT according to time schedule,” she stated.
The minister said the Grant for Vulnerable Groups programme was introduced in 2020 to sustain the social inclusion agenda of the Federal Government, as this was consistent with the national target of lifting 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in 10 years.
She said, “It is designed to provide a one-off grant to some of the poorest and most vulnerable women in rural and peri-urban areas of the country.
“A cash grant of N20,000 will be disbursed to poor women and men across the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory.”
Farouq said the main objective of the programme was to increase income and productive assets of target beneficiaries.
“The specific objectives are to increase access to financial capital required for economic and income-generating activities, promote financial inclusion among unbanked and underserved populations and contribute towards improving their living standard,” she stated.
The minister explained that 70 per cent of the total number of beneficiaries would be women, while the remaining 30 per cent would be men.
“In addition, about 15 per cent of the total number of beneficiaries is specifically allocated to the segment of the population with special needs, including persons with disability and senior citizens across the country, forcibly displaced persons (internally displaced persons, returnees, etc), widows and orphans,” Farouq stated.
She added, “The programme is targeted at poor rural and peri-urban women and men within the productive age of 18 and above.
“The ministry is working with critical ministries, department and agencies, state government as well as relevant stakeholders to identify, select and mobilise beneficiaries.”
According to her, the ministry has engaged the services of payment service providers, all registered by the Central Bank of Nigeria for disbursement of funds.
She explained that the cash grant of N20,000 would be paid to target beneficiaries using physical payment and through bank accounts or wallets.
“It is our hope that the beneficiaries of this programme will make good use of the grant to improve productive activities that would generate more income and improve their living standard,” the minister stated.