The Honourable Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development Sadiya Umar Farouq has inaugurated a symbolic disbursement of N20,000 grant to each of the 2,510 beneficiaries from all the local government areas of Abia State.
Represented by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Bashir Nura Alkali, she said, “A cash grant of N20,000.00 will be disbursed to about 125,000 poor women across the 36 States of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory. Our target in Abia State is to disburse the grant to about 2,510 beneficiaries across all Local Government Councils. The grant is expected to increase income and productive assets of target beneficiaries”.
The Minister, said that ” with the complementary effort of the State Government, the target beneficiaries will all be adequately covered within the next few days. I am optimistic that with the support and cooperation of His Excellency, Chief Okezie Ikpeazu and other stakeholders present here, we will remain on track to improving the livelihood of the ordinary Nigerians. To the beneficiaries, let me however reiterate that this money belongs to you and you alone. It is meant for you to use in any small business venture you deem fit and that will improve your lives. Please ensure that you use it for this purpose.”
The Minister applauded the Governor, his Executive Council and the State focal Person for joining in the flag off and the preparations made towards the success of the event during the courtesy visit to the Office of the Deputy Governor His Execellency Rt.Hon.Sir.Ude Okochukwu in the Government house.
The Executive Governor of Abia State His Excellency, Okezie Victor Ikpeazu through the Deputy Governor praised the Federal government for the innovative initiative of President Muhammadu Buhari , he said, ” in order to improve the welfare of the rural people in Abia State the Dr. Ikpeazu administration prioritised and mainstreamed Social Inclusion and Poverty Reduction in it’s policy trust”.
He urged all the beneficiaries to judiciously invest the money in petty businesses as a way of improving their livelihood and growing the rural economy.
The Governor assured the Federal Government and it’s agencies that the State government will continue to partner and compliment their efforts in the over all interest of the people of the State.
The State Focal Person on Social Investment Programme, Chinenye Nwaogu, described the grant as a seed fund that can be multiplied if properly invested.
He added that the funds came at the time when the people are faced with a challenging pandemic which has ravaged global economies.
On behalf of the women with disabilities in Abia State, a beneficiary of the grant Ngozi Nwagu expressed gratitude to the Federal government for including women with disabilities in the cash grant. She said it is the first time people with disabilities are benefiting from such grants in the state.
She commended the Federal Government for the establishment of the Commission for People with Disabilities saying, it will go a long way to take care of the rights, dignity and welfare of PWD’s in the country.
Nwagu promised that women with disabilities will use the grant to support their trade which will go a long way to reduce poverty, joblessness and idleness among women with disabilities in the state.
Rhoda Ishaku Iliya
5th March, 2021