The Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP 2.0) has begun the disbursement of soft loan to 3,166 vulnerable and low-icome groups engaged in commercial activities in Niger.
The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajiya Sadiya Farouq made the announcement during the inauguration of the National Social Investment Programmes (N-SIP) in Minna on Tuesday.
The programmes inaugurated were the Federal government grant to vulnerable groups, GEEP 2.0 Roll-Out, digitalised payment for Conditional Cash Transfer, Height and Weight Measurement Kits, launching of nationwide sensitisation of home-grown school feeding and inspection of farm to kitchen center.
Farouq said that no fewer than 1,142,783 potential beneficiaries were registered across 774 local government of the country in the first phase of GEEP.
According to her, 41,513 beneficiariries were registered in Niger state with 9,637 verified and 3,166 enumerated beneficiaries were selected to benefit.
She added that GEEP was captured in three signature schemes such as TraderMoni and MarketMoni loan of N50,000 and FarmerMoni of N300,000 meant to uplift underprivileged and marginalised youths and marginalised women in the society as well provide agricultural inputs worth to rural farmers respectively.
The minister also inaugurated Grant for Vulnerable Groups programme (GVG) designed to provide a one-off grant of N20,000 to 5,428 poorest and most vulnerable people in rural and urban areas across the 25 local government areas of Niger.
She said that GVG was meant to empower beneficiaries to improve their productivity and their commercial activities, mainly aimed at easing them out of poverty, adding that the programme was targeted at lifting 100 million Nigerians out of poverty.
Farouq also noted that the Federal government had digitised payment of N5,000 Conditional Cash Transfer to improve the pace of payment to ensure transparency and accountability and enable the generation of reliable payment data and records.
The ministers said that 9.9 million children were currently being fed nationwide under the home-grown school feeding programme adding that President Muhammadu Buhari had approved the extension of the programme to additional five million children.
In his remarks, Sani-Bello, described the social protection programmes as “unprecedented which were aimed at lifting over 100 million Nigerians out of poverty."
Bello, represented by Alhaji Ahmed Matane, the Secretary to the Niger Government, noted that the successful implementation of the programme by the All Progressives Progressives Congress (APC)-led administration would give the party ticket to win the 2023 elections.
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