- Femi Gbajabiamila said a large number of vulnerable Nigerians are yet to receive federal government's relief package
- The lawmaker said despite the government's efforts to cushion the effect of Covid-19, many Nigerians across constituencies still complain of neglect
- The speaker further warned that the “acts of omission or commission in any such aggravations” posed a challenge to the country
Femi Gbajabiamila, speaker of the House of Representatives, has called on the federal government to intensify its efforts in ensuring that Covid-19 palliatives reach the vulnerable Nigerians who are in dire need during the lockdown.
Speaking at a plenary on Tuesday, April 28, the lawmaker noted that the federal government has been doing well in cushioning the effect of coronavirus crisis through the palliatives programme.
He, however, picked a hole in the project, saying “act of omission or commission in any such aggravations” is capable of posing a danger to the country's poverty-hit population amid coronavirus crisis.
Legit.ng recalls that the federal government, through its Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management, said over 3.6 million households have been captured in the palliative programme nationwide.
But Gbajabiamila said the lawmakers received complaints from constituencies that the Covid-19 packages have not reached the grassroots in what is putting an integrity question on the federal government's claims.
The speaker called for more efforts and feasible strategy in the distribution of the relief packages to Nigerians.
“When the federal government interventions do not reach those that need, we are the first to receive complaints and have to explain to our constituents the reasons why they do not qualify or why they have been left out.
“Our grassroots interactions provide knowledge and context that can be useful to ensure that the hardest-hit communities receive help,” Gbajabiamila noted.
The speaker also said that the lower chamber would work on legislation to codify the SIP programme into a bill that the House will consider in its next sitting.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng reported that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has approved the sum of $3.4billion to support Nigeria’s COVID-19 fight.
The grant to Nigeria is the highest so far to any member country. The grant, called Rapid Financing Instrument (RFI), is granted to member countries that are not under an IMF programme.
The news was announced on Twitter by a former African Development Bank Former AfDB Lead Economist on Nigeria, Barbara Barungi.
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