- The minister of budget and national planning, Udoma Udo Udoma said the Buhari-led administration is focused on eradicating poverty
- Udoma said the FG is fighting poverty not just by giving Nigerians fish to eat but by teaching them how to catch fish
- Also, Maryam Uwais, President Buhari’s special adviser on social protection plan, revealed the strategies the FG is using in ensuring poverty is eradicated
The minister of budget and national planning, Udoma Udo Udoma, has revealed how President Muhammadu Buhari-led federal government is fighting poverty.
Udoma, speaking at a three-day Social Protection Cross Learning Summit with the themed: “Improving the Lives of Poor and Vulnerable Nigerians: Lessons from Implementing Social Protection in Nigeria” in Abuja, said the federal government is fighting poverty step-by-step and ameliorating the plight of the poor and vulnerable people across the country.
According to Daily Trust, Udoma said the federal government is fighting poverty not just by giving people fish to eat but by teaching them how to catch fish so that they can use that to solve their problems.
His words: “We have reviewed programmes of social interaction put up by the government and the testimonies are there on how it is improving the lives of the poor and vulnerable in the society.
“This summit is a follow up on the first that was done in 2016 and through it, Nigeria has been able to develop her National Social Protection Policy which would be launched in the course of this three-day summit.
“It has 16 measures aimed at promoting and enhancing the dignity and protection of the poor and vulnerable people in the country.”
Earlier in her opening remark, Maryam Uwais, President Buhari’s special adviser on social protection plan, said the summit was to extend discussions on how to address the challenges of the poor and vulnerable in the society adding that they have confidence that they have concerted effort in eradicating poverty in the land.
She said: “We are mandated to coordinate the social protection issues and the aim is to digest strategies to curb issues relating to the vulnerable in our country.”
She stated that there are concerns about poverty in this country, claiming that there was no focus on the lives of the poor and the vulnerable by the previous administrations
She added: “But for the first time, money has been budgeted for poverty reduction every year since 2016 and that is what has been utilised to see how we can reach these people.”
Uwais added that the current administration is also working with stakeholders and development partners to ensure they are not just giving money or grant but training people in all the local governments.
She continued: “We are building capacity at local levels and it has to be a concerted effort on seeing how we can survive it.
“It is more than just giving, it’s support, training, mentoring and coaching. The development partners have supported lots of interventions across the world and we are hoping that it would help us too.”
She reiterated that the poverty eradication initiatives are already making positive impacts.
“But what we are doing is very impactful if you listen to the stories of the beneficiaries, it’s shaping the identity of these people.
“It helps to know the type of challenges facing these people and not just infrastructure alone even though infrastructure is good.
“Right now, we have data with the social registry of 26 states we are currently working with but we are also collating data in other states which needs to be collected at community levels because it is the communities that identify who the poor are. Once we get the data, we generate it and clean it up in Abuja.
“The remaining states would be part of our social register by the end of March, 2019,” she noted.
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Meanwhile, four months after Nigeria took over from India as the poverty capital of the world, the number of Nigerians living with extreme poverty is currently standing at 88,011,759, according to the World Poverty Clock, created by Vienna-based World Data Lab.
According to the World Poverty Clock, “the outlook for poverty alleviation in Nigeria is currently weak,” with nearly six people slipping into extreme poverty every minute.
Legit.ng gathered that the World Bank, IMF, United Nations, forecast that Nigeria will not hit the 2030 target for ending global poverty.
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