Bala Mohammed Abdulkadir, Bauchi State Governor has described the Social Investment Programme of the Federal Government as ineffective in addressing the economic needs of the people of the country.
The Governor said despite the one trillion naira budgeted for the programme under different empowerment schemes under the office of Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management, Sadiya Umar Farouq, the programme failed to lift millions of Nigerians in the rural communities out of poverty.
Governor Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed stated this yesterday in Dambam while distributing empowerment packs under Kaura Economic Empowerment Programme to selected beneficiaries worth over 75 million naira.
He said aides of President Muhammadu Buhari thwart the efforts of the president aimed at empowering poor Nigerians in contrast to the good intentions of the President.
The governor said the huge money budgeted for Conditional Cash Transfer and other economic empowerment programmes of President Buhari has been cornered into private pockets of the privileged few that were entrusted with the task of implementing the programme.
“We are doing empowerment and you can see the emphasis is on the local level, to the ward level because they interact with the majority of our people at the local level especially those who voted for us and those that we want them to vote for us in 2023 and that is why we are empowering them ensuring and deepening the already known and universally acclaimed PDP reward system that has been abandoned by this administration.
“At the same time, I am also grateful to our members of the state assembly, our commissioners and our appointees they are precisely doing exactly what am doing today in their own ways and means. We are very grateful and this is what is absent in the APC administration.
“We have so many appointees but you can hardly see them. They are hidden; they are just like a mirage,” he said.
Governor Bala said the distribution of the economic empowerment packs to beneficiaries in Dambam local government is in line with his bottom-up approach to alleviating poverty in the grassroots.
He said PDP did so well to work for the progress and development of Nigeria by building the infrastructural base that Nigeria and Nigerians are currently enjoying, adding that the APC will be claiming some of the infrastructures that PDP build.
“their economic empowerment is so huge but it is not reaching anywhere and I said and I wanted it to be conveyed to the Presidency that the social investment programme is not working.
“We have our colleagues at the national level, we have our appointees who are arresting everything into their pockets; they don’t have anything like this to show whereas a trillion naira is budgeted for that.
“Even where they are distributing, I want to be contradicted, they normally share with that responsible for giving out this empowerment programme, if it is fifty thousand naira, they take twenty-five thousand naira.
“We are asking our President to shine his eyes to look very well; he has good intentions but his intentions have been consistently thwarted by those around him. We must mention this because change is the only thing that is dynamic.
“When you are supposed to impact some people through social investment is not reaching the people; when there is supposed to be intervention even at sub-national levels through the economic sustainability plan under the very big office of the President, nothing is coming is reaching us in the state. Nothing. No Kobo,” Governor Bala said.