Minister of Humanitarian Affairs Addresses NPower Program Challenges
Betta Edu, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, has shed light on some of the challenges plaguing the NPower program in Nigeria. During an interview with Arise TV, she acknowledged that there were issues with the program, including the presence of individuals who shouldn’t be on it. Edu further revealed that her ministry was actively working to rectify these issues.
Identifying the Challenges
Edu explained, “First of all, when we came onboard, we found lots of issues with the NPower programme that made us re-engage the entire plan. One of the things was that there were persons registered on the NPower beyond the envelope that was provided for the programme.”
She also highlighted delays in payment, noting that funds allocated for NPower beneficiaries were not disbursed in a timely manner. Additionally, there were individuals on the payment list who were not supposed to be there, as well as participants who had not been rendering services but were still enrolled for payment.
Furthermore, the minister mentioned cases where participants’ time with NPower had elapsed, yet they believed they were entitled to continued payment, leading to discussions of an “exit plan.”
Steps Toward Resolution
To address these issues, the ministry established a committee to thoroughly examine and report on the challenges. This committee, headed by the ministry’s secretary, is tasked with finding solutions to the problems identified within the NPower program.
Commitment to Poverty Alleviation
Edu also emphasized the commitment of the administration, led by President Bola Tinubu, to alleviate poverty in Nigeria. The government aims to lift 133 million Nigerians out of poverty by 2030, aligning with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations. She added that the approach to poverty alleviation would involve innovative strategies rather than continuing with the same methods that yielded limited results.
The ministry is optimistic about making substantial progress in poverty alleviation, with a goal to remove at least 20 million Nigerians from poverty within the next year.
As the ministry works to address the challenges within the NPower program and advance its poverty alleviation initiatives, Nigerians will be keenly watching the outcomes and the impact on the lives of those in need.