The federal government will scale up the National Social Investment Programmes (NSIP) to reach more Nigerians in this second tenure of President Muhammadu Buhari, an official said on Saturday.
Maryam Uwais, Senior Special Adviser to the President on Social Investment Programmes, gave the assurance in Lagos.
She spoke at a conference organised by the Reformers Arise – a subsidiary of Incubator Africa – a development agency.
The conference held at the Federal Palace Hotel.
Mrs Uwais said that the administration would build on the successes of the programmes to put smiles on the faces of more Nigerians.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the special adviser is the driver of the programmes, a cardinal agenda of the government.
Mrs Uwais said: “We have gone far in 21 states but we hope to build on it, and we urge our media to go out and see how far we have gone.
”If our media go to these rural areas many will understand how far we have gone in 21 states.”
She said that the impact of the programmes was being felt all over, as beneficiaries could be found in communities where the programmes had been implemented.
She said: “This intervention is to alleviate poverty; we are seeing results. For instance, the Tradermoni scheme has been on since 2016, but it got more attention during the elections.
“I was at the airport a while ago, and someone ran to me. I was afraid but he told me he benefitted from the scheme. He returned N10,000 and got access to N15,000.
“We have a WhatsApp platform with communities and we pay close attention to their needs; we try to do our possible best.
”That, for me, is development. It is transforming lives, but we can’t brag about this, as a responsible government that we are; we are committed.”
She added that the Home Grown School Feeding Programme, which provides one meal per day in primary schools, has provided job opportunities for communities around schools.
“The federal government provides six million eggs and 594 cows weekly under its Home Grown School Feeding Programme to school children.
“The programme has made poultry farmers smile to banks. What about the caterers? We know that when people are gainfully employed, they shun violence,” the special adviser said.
She urged other stakeholders including the media to partner with the federal government to improve the programmes.
“it is more rewarding when our media showcase this. The fact that it is not yet in the 36 states doesn’t mean it is not happening.
“Even those who have benefitted from this, know this; communities have benefitted, but we don’t have to turn this into propaganda.”
NAN reports that NSIP includes the Conditional Cash Transfer Programme which is giving out N5,000 monthly to 297,973 households, and Tradermoni, where a collateral-free loan of N10,000 is given to petty traders to assist them in their daily trade.
It also includes N-Power which has employed 500,000 youth graduates.
Beneficiaries of N-Power are paid a monthly stipend of N30,000 and deployed as volunteers under N-Teach, N-Health and N-Agro.