Second Batch Of Palliatives: Kaduna State Government To Spend 11.4bn

In an effort to bring succour to the poor and vulnerable in the state, the Kaduna State Government is spending the sum of N11.4 billion in the distribution of the second batch of palliatives to the state citizens.

Governor Uba Sani made it known on Monday, 18th March during the flag-Off of the distribution of second batch of palliatives to kaduna state citizens with the theme “Sustainable Livelihoods through Social Intervention and Economic Empowerment”.

Governor Sani went further to say that, “I am happy to inform you that today we are commencing the distribution of 128 Trucks of Rice and Maize worth N3.4 Billion to the poor, vulnerable and underserved citizens of Kaduna State. We are targeting 200,000 (Two Hundred Thousand) Households, approximately 1,000,000 (One Million) persons.

“Few days after my assumption of office, I signed an Executive Order on Financial Inclusion to address the exclusion of the poor, under-served and vulnerable from financial services and ensure that they benefit from social intervention programs of Kaduna State and the Federal Government.

“We set for ourselves the target of facilitating the opening of 2.5 million bank accounts for poor, vulnerable and underserved citizens of Kaduna State. Through our efforts, 2 million bank accounts have been opened. We are working assiduously to ensure that bank accounts are opened for the remaining 500,000 less privileged citizens of Kaduna State.

“We have developed a credible Social Register for Cash Transfers. We shall fully develop the Cash Transfer System because it has been proven to be an effective social protection measure. It has been successful in reducing poverty and food insecurity in many countries.

“Because of the effective implementation of the Executive Order on Financial Inclusion, especially the opening of bank accounts and development of a credible Social Register, our previously excluded citizens are now able to benefit from Kaduna State and Federal Government’s social intervention programs. We have commenced, with urgency, the following intervention programs to bring succour to the less privileged citizens of our state:

“The sum of N4.2 Billion has been earmarked for distribution of cash, grants, fertilizer, farm inputs and implements to vulnerable households, smallholder farmers, Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), Persons With Disability, Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), Orphans, Market Women and Youths.

“As I am speaking to you now, 9,800 poor and vulnerable households, including over 1000 persons with disability have started receiving alerts. They are receiving N50,000 (Fifty Thousand Naira) each.

“We have commenced the release of grants to 7,500 Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs). The MSMEs are getting between N100,000 and N500,000, up to N1,000,000, depending on the size of the enterprise. Small businesses are the backbones of any economy.

“When we came to office in 2023, small businesses in Kaduna State were struggling to survive. Their number was less than 1000. Through our administration’s strategic interventions, targeted support, and strengthening of Ease of Doing Business, the number of MSMEs in Kaduna State have risen to 10,000.

“Fertilizer and other farm inputs and implements are being distributed to 5,091 farmers.

“N3.3 Billion has been released for payment of Pension and Gratuities, as well as Death Benefits to families of deceased civil servants. Beneficiaries have started receiving alerts. The total number of beneficiaries stands at 1338.

“Civil servants have started benefitting from our N500 Million Revolving Loan Scheme”.

The governor added that, his administration has identified poverty reduction in rural areas as key to unlocking the enormous potential of Kaduna State.

He also said that, they are equally determined to reach the urban poor and assist them to escape extreme poverty, as they are also focusing on the revival and boosting of small businesses through the provision of financial support and improving Ease of Doing Business.

“In our continuing efforts, therefore, to tackle poverty headlong and respond to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s charge to Governors to take prompt and effective measures to alleviate the suffering of citizens in their respective states, the Kaduna State Government has taken some measures and lined up some steps which would be implemented immediately.

“The State Government set up a high – powered Palliatives Distribution Committee charged with developing an Implementation Strategy/Plan and Executing the Distribution of the Palliatives in a Fair and Even Manner. Members of the Committee include representatives of Organized Labour (NLC and TUC), Civil Society Organizations, Persons with Disability, National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), Jama’atu Nasril Islam (JNI), Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Traditional Institutions, Youth and Women Organizations, the Commissioner of Police, Director of DSS, Commandant of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, and officials of the Kaduna State Government.

“We shall continue to take all measures necessary to bring succour to the poor and vulnerable in our state. In the next two months, we shall commence the implementation of the 3rd Phase of our Palliatives Programme. It’s a full package.

“We have put in place a robust security arrangement to protect the trucks conveying rice and maize to various locations. Any attempt by anybody or group to hijack or divert the trucks would be visited with the full weight of the law. We therefore solicit the full support and cooperation of our citizens to ensure a hitch-free palliatives distribution exercise” Governor Uba Sani, stated.