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Only Rivers Has Not Collected COVID-19 Palliatives, Sadiya Umar Reveals

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Minister of humanitarian affairs, disaster management and social development, Sadiya Umar Farouq on Tuesday disclosed that all states except Rivers have collected COVID-19 palliatives.

This disclosure was made by the minister on Tuesday while addressing the house of representatives committee

Farouq also said the ministry did not receive “any penny” from any organisation as COVID-19 intervention.

The humanitarian minister who was at the national assembly to speak on budget performance, said so far, the ministry operated with its budgetary allocation.

Although she did not state while Rivers is yet to get the palliatives being distributed to cushion the effects of the pandemic, the minister said their share is “still waiting for them.”

“We distributed these palliatives to all the states. We have given out 70,000 tons of grains from the national grain centre by Mr. President,” she said.

“We were also given foodstuff by customs and this we distributed around the 36 states of the federation including FCT. We handed over these palliatives to all the state governors for onward distribution to the poor and the vulnerable in their states

“In FCT, we handed over the palliatives to the two ministers of FCT for distribution to the poor. It is only Rivers state that has not collected their own share. It is still there waiting for them.”

Farouk said while the ministry did not get money outside its 2021 budget of N3.1 billion, it has received relief items since the pandemic started.

“We have not received a penny from any organization within or outside Nigeria,” she said.

“We only operate within the budgetary allocation as appropriated (budgeted). But we received some relief items from some organizations during the pandemic like food items, beverages. We have not received any funding from any quarters.”

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Governance

FG Raises Number Of Beneficiaries Of N-Power, School Feeding

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How to prepare for the N-Power application

President Muhammadu Buhari has directed an increase in the beneficiaries of the National Social Investment Programmes.

The President directed the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development to increase the number of N-Power beneficiaries from 500,000 to 1,000,000.

He also directed an increase in the beneficiaries of Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP) by 1,000,000 as well as beneficiaries of the Home-Grown School Feeding by 5,000,000.

Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Farouq disclosed these during a briefing to give account of her ministry in the last one year on Monday in Abuja.

The Minister said about 3.7 million households comprising of more than 15.5 million individuals have been captured on the National Social Register.

She said the ministry has developed a strategy for targeting the urban poor in line with President Buhari’s directive to expand the National Social Register.

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Gov Okowa Signs 2021 Budget Of N383bn

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Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta on Monday in Asaba assented to the state’s 2021 Appropriation Bill of N383 billon.

The bill tagged “Budget of Economic Recovery” is made up of N210 billion capital expenditure and N173 billion recurrent expenditure

The Delta House of Assembly increased the budget figure of N378.48 proposed by the governor to N383 billion.

Signing the budget, Okowa assured the people that the state would strive to recover from the economic challenges engendered by Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The governor commended the state house of assembly for the speedy passage of the bill.

He said that signing the budget before December would avail the state government the opportunity to further plan towards its implementation from January, 2021.

He said that the state government would remain focused in the implemention of the budget as passed, for the benefit of the people.

The governor noted that there was warm working relationship between the executive and the legislature in the state.

“You have just witnessed my signing into law, the 2021 Appropriation Bill, and as I said on Oct. 27, during the presentation of the bill, we are in very difficult times this year.

“The second wave of the pandemic will create further challenge for the recovery of the economy of our nation.

“However, we are optimistic that in the 2021 fiscal year, things will gradually improve and we will be able to get back to the desired levels of infrastructural and human capital development for our people.

“I pray that God will help us and this nation to rediscover ourselves and to commit every work of our people and our state and nation for the common good of all our citizens.

The budget is termed ‘budget of economic recovery’ because we are very much aware of the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on both our health systems and the economy of the country.

“The pandemic obviously impacted negatively on our budget in 2020 that we had to reduce it twice in the year.

“I want to appreciate our contractors who have continued to stay in their various sites to work even when it is becoming increasingly difficult to make payments on contractual agreements already made.

“We will continue to be very responsible as a state and we will continue to work with them to deliver on our projects,” he said.

The governor expressed delight that some of the key projects in the state, including the new state secretariat building and the Ughelli-Asaba dual carriageway were still on course.

“I want to reassure you, Mr Speaker and Delta people that the executive will keep focus on the development of projects that we are involved in,” he added.

He disclosed that work had commenced at the Ogwashi-Uku Agro-Industrial Park, and reaffirmed that the state government was committed to delivering the project on time.

Okowa said that the state would continue to focus on entrepreneurship programmes, and take them to higher levels in the 2021 fiscal year by engaging more youths.

He said that the state government was also be paying attention to the girl-child development and the empowerment of women.

Presenting the appropriation bill, the Speaker of the state assembly, Sherrif Oborevwori, said that the bill went through all legislative process before being passed.

He said that the bill was presented to the house on Oct. 27 and was passed on Nov. 17, after it was considered sector by sector.

“The quick passage of the bill was necessitated by Your Excellency’s vision to bring the state out of the economic challenges posed by the pandemic,” he said.

According to him, the increase in the budget size was to provide for some Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) that were not captured in the proposal.


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