N-Power: Federal govt speaks on corruption in scheme, impact made
The Federal Government said that the political will demonstrated in the execution of the N-Power programme, insulated it from corruption and other forms of sharp practices that marred similar youth empowerment endeavours in the past.
Communications Manager, National Social Investment Office (NSIO) Justice Bibiye, in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja, said the transparency in running the
According to him, at inception, the BVN of successful candidates are sent to Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) for verification. Bibiye said that NIBSS, being the custodian of the BVN data, authenticated the identity of each and every name, number and account number submitted by the NSIO, and anyone not verified was dropped from the list of successful beneficiaries. For the first set of 200,000 beneficiaries submitted for verification, NIBSS verified 93 per cent of the total number, after which only those verified were submitted to the various States, which entities are saddled with the responsibility of physically verifying the beneficiaries and deploying them to their Primary Places of Assignment (PPA). Upon confirmation of the deployments to the PPAs, the NSIO then signs off to the Ministry of Budget and National Planning, which makes payment directly to the accounts of beneficiaries through the NIBBS. This process also applies to other components of the social intervention programmes except for the National Conditional Cash Transfer programme, where due to logistics challenges, mobile money agents (MMA) are engaged to reach out to beneficiaries in the rural areas. The successful MMA’s are selected through an open process in compliance with the BPP Act, and even though they pay beneficiaries in remote locations where there is a dearth of banking infrastructure, they each have a backend technology that enables visibility and timely reconciliation of payments, as a pre-condition to engagement,’’ he said. He said the Federal Government remained favourably disposed to constructive criticisms and the feedback that would aid ongoing efforts to strengthen the execution strategies of the SIPs for greater service delivery to Nigerians. Bibiye, however, said that critics were also encouraged to follow up closely and interrogate the processes of the programme to avoid making remarks that were not evidence-based. He said that Nigerians, particularly beneficiaries of the programme and their dependents, should be rest assured that the SIPs were not crumbling or coming to an end any time soon as predicted by naysayers. The communications manager said that the Federal Government, through the NSIO, would continue to redouble efforts to ensure that the intended objectives of the Social Intervention Programmes were achieved in line with public expectations.