Senate distrusts FG's motive in use of N500bn to recruit 500, 000 teachers
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Senate distrusts FG’s motive in use of N500bn to recruit 500, 000 teachers

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Senate in stormy session over moves to amend INEC Act

The Senate, today, expressed worry over Federal Government’s implementation of the proposed N500 billion intervention funds for the recruitment of 500,000 school teachers and payment of stipends to unemployed Nigerians.

The Senate which expressed worry over the manner the Federal Government is going about the recruitment exercise of school teachers, has set aside Tuesday next week to debate the issue.

Leader of the Senate, ‎Senator Ali Ndume who raised the motion under Order 41 (1), warned lawmakers not take the issue likely.

He condemned Federal Government’s approach and questioned why applicants have been mandated to register online, despite the inability of some of them to access the Internet.

He said the insistence that applicants must apply online will shortchange some Nigerians. Ndume said every local government area in Nigeria must be carried ‎along in the ongoing recruitment exercise of 500,000 school teachers.

Ndume said: “We do not have to wait for the period to be over before we act. We need to act now. They are asking them to apply online. Most of those that should apply are offline and they are asking them to apply online.

“Let them come to the Senate and tell us how much has been released to them so that we will not be short changed. We need to be sure so that people will not be shortchanged. Every local government must benefit from the scheme. I am going to bring a motion. Those who are interested in co-sponsoring the motion should see me so that we can work on it together.”

In his contribution, the Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ike Ekweremadu who presided during plenary, said the issue will be discussed at the next legislative day.

“The Senate Leader told me about this issue and I think it is something we should discuss. This issue will be discussed at the next legislative day. It is an important issue,” he added.

In June this year, the Federal Government first rolled-out N500 billion social investment programmes with the recruitment of 500,000 direct teachers, through an internet portal named npower.gov.ng.

Besides the monthly take home pay of the teachers estimated at about N23,000, the selected 500,000 graduates will also get computer devices that will contain information necessary for their specific engagement, as well as information for their continuous training and development. They will also keep the devices even after exiting the programme.

By Ehisuan Odia….

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