Blessing Bature-Akpakpan, Abuja
The Federal Government has flagged off the re-commencement process on the implementation of the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT ), in Nationwide and within the three Area Council in the Federal Capital Territory.
The Minister of Humanitarian affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Umar-Farouq made this known during the flag-off ceremony of the re-commencement that in FCT, a total number of 23,893 beneficiaries across 3 Area Council, (Abaji, Kuje and Kwali) that the officials of the Programme will provide all relevant details on the payments as they proceed with the re-commencement.
Farouq said, “The Ministry has directed the NCTO to proceed with a phased migration of the beneficiaries from offline payment systems to open online systems using accounts opened by licensed Payment Service Providers (PSPs) that include Commercial Banks, Microfinance Banks, Payments Service Banks and Mobile Money Operators.
“With this development, beneficiaries can access or control their accounts through the use of Personal Identification Numbers (PIN), perform all transactions like withdrawal, bank transfers and bill payments etc. For now, 25% of the beneficiaries are targeted and we will gradually extend this to all beneficiaries as far as industry constraints would allow.
Recall the President Buhari approved the partnership with the World Bank in 2016 to designed and developed a safety nets programme for Nigeria under a broadbased platform of the National Social Safety Nets Project (NASSP). One important components of the project is the Household Uplifting-Conditional Cash Transfer (HUP-CCT) administered under a National Cash Transfer Office (NCTO) to deliver financial support to poor and vulnerable households (PVHH) Nationwide.
“This is to enhance the effectiveness of the project and ensure fairness, a National Social Safety Net Coordinating Office (NASSCO) was also established under the NASSP to transparently deploy an innovative strategy to dynamically capture data on all poor and vulnerable households in the country into a well-managed National Social Register (NSR). This register is built using a community base targeting mechanism where the community members themselves determine the poor of the poor and most vulnerable households amongst themselves.
She stated that HUP-CCT beneficiaries are then mined from this database using a standardised eligibility criterion, and granted with a monthly stipend to improved household consumption; increase in utilization of health and nutrition services; improve school enrolment and attendance; improve environmental sanitation and management; improve asset and financial acquisition; and ensure that beneficiaries are engaged in sustainable livelihood activities.
She said with the flag-off today, payments will recommence in all participating States in the Country. The implementation process includes that when the beneficiaries in the state started receiving payment, and for how long is their backlog; beneficiaries to note that payments were consistently made bimonthly until there was a pause; that the pause became necessary because of a change in administration/management; tweaking of payment modalities to respond to cashless realities, security concerns and digitization of the payment processes for improvement and enhanced service delivery, ensuring value for money, transparency and accountability; and most importantly the effects of restrictions on mass gathering as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
She appreciated the World Bank for their patience and support in designing and implementing the programme and recognize the efforts of the NASSCO and NCTO Staff for their doggedness to ensure that we see this day. Thanksgiving