CONTRARY to allegation making the rounds in some quatres that the flagship social intervention programme of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration, N-Power, is riddled with sleaze and graft, federal government has deflated the criticism.
Dismissing the allegation as lacking substance and not reflecting the true picture on ground, it urged Nigerians to continue to support the scheme.
Communications Manager of National Social Investment Office (NSIO), Justice Bibiye, made the clarification yesterday in Abuja in a statement, adding that transparency has remained the watchword in running the programme.
According to him, this is responsible for its huge impact on its beneficiaries and the economy, explaining that President Buhari has demonstrated political will in execution of N-Power that was lacking in similar youth empowerment programmes of past regimes that were marred by sharp practices.
“It is either those critics have lost touch with existential realities as it concerns this government’s strict approach in implementing its policies and programmes, or that the resounding successes recorded, as evidenced in the outpouring of sincere and honest testimonies by the beneficiaries, is lost on them.
We are aware that some persons have assumed the role of perpetual pessimists of the SIPs, following the institution of processes and procedures that frown at selfish tendencies and corrupt practices at the NSIO. We, however, owe it a duty to Nigerians to continue to set the records straight whenever naysayers come up with falsehoods to mislead the public.
We wish to state categorically that there are no N-power ghost beneficiaries neither is the programme embroiled in corruption as alleged by those who have decided to see nothing good in the scheme. From application, selection, deployment and payment of volunteers, the process is transparent, being technology driven,” he said.
Bibiye disclosed that right from its inception, BVN of successful candidates are sent to Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) for verification before being captured into N-Power data base.
Meanwhile, Former Education Minister, Oby Ezekwesili has faulted President Muhammadu Buhari’s directive that Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) should stop providing foreign exchange for food importation.
Speaking in a tweet on her Twitter handle yesterday, Ezekwesili described Buhari as a leader “completely out-of-touch.
“The President was cocooned away in the grandeur of @AsoRock where they serve him delicatessen and praise-sing to him: Ranka ci dede Sir! Your Agriculture Policy is working wonderfully. All farmers in Nigeria are now Billionaires and exporting to the US,” the post reads.