Three hundred and fifty thousand unemployed graduates stand a chance of being gainfully engaged if the Buhari-led administration implements its budgetary proposal of spending about N158billion on the N-Power Volunteer Corps scheme in 2017.
This was made known Sunday by the Senior Special Assiatant on Media & Publicity to Acting President Yemi Osinbajo, Laolu Akande, via a statement signed by him.
The N-Power is one of the many Social Investment Programmes (SIPs) enunciated by the All Progressives Congress (APC) government.
Speaking of the N158bn N-Power budget, Akande said, ” 350,000 unemployed graduates more would be hired and trained, alongside 50,000 non-graduates youths to be engaged as artisans and in other creative ventures.”
“While we were able to engage 200,000 unemployed graduates last year, we will do 350,000 more this year,” he emphasized.
Still under the 2017 budget proposals, Akande disclosed that about N75B has been allocated for the National Homegrown School Feeding Programme, which will provide one hot meal a day to 5 million primary school pupils.
He also stated that under the 2017 budget a sum of N112.2B has been allocated for the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme aimed at providing interest-free loans to up to 1.2million market men and women, traders, artisans, youths and farmers.
Under the GEEP, he explained that beneficiaries will receive between N10,000 and N100,000 loans with a one-time 5% administrative fee. The government claims that under the 2016 budget, over 20,000 Nigerians in about 14 states and counting, have been benefiting from GEEP.
The conditional Cash Transfer which has kicked off in 9 states would be further expanded under the 2016 budget and will reach more states and much more Nigerians, Akande said. He added that while the plan in 2016 budget targeted one million poorest and vulnerable Nigerians, the 2017 budget has an additional N54.98B budgeted for the continuation of the N5000 monthly social safety net payments to the poorest Nigerians.
Akande further clarified that while President Muhammadu Buhari has further approved another N500B this year for all the social intervention programmes, N100B out of it has been allocated for the Family Homes Fund as already announced by the Ministry of Finance.
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