Sixteen states in Nigeria are now participating in the federal government’s Conditional Cash Transfer Programme, the National Programme Coordinator, Dr. Temitope Sinkaiye, has disclosed in Minna, Niger State capital on Monday.
Sinkaiye who did not name the states, however, said the scheme had been operating successfully in the said states, stressing that state governments whose people were benefiting from the programme did not need to counter fund it, but said the only requirement was for the states to provide the offices and staff.
She was speaking at the opening of a workshop for federal government’s Savings and Group Mobilisation for National Conditional Cash Transfer beneficiaries.
162 facilitators drawn from 12 local government areas who would eventually attend to 12,000 beneficiaries of the scheme were taking part in the training, she said, adding that the programme would be widened to cover the whole state in subsequent months.
Declaring the workshop open, Niger State Commissioner for Information, Mr. Jonathan Tsado Vatsa, challenged the people of the state to hold the administration accountable on how monies received are expended.
Vatsa said this was because previous governments in the state had either “squandered or siphoned” money meant for the development of the state.
“This is why we are referred to as a poor state with poor people,” Vatsa said, adding that if the resources of the state had been judiciously applied, the state would have been better for it.
According to him, “Our people should ask questions; ask how government monies are being spent, because it will bring about checks and balances.
“The only way to get out of poverty is to get education, but the rich and those who stole our monies are killing the system so that you don’t get informed.
Similar trainings are going on in four other states in the country.