By Shola Abayomi.
The Federal Government has revealed that N279 billion has been spent on beneficiaries of the N-Power programme since its inception in December 2016.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Job Creation and Youth Employment, Office of the Vice President, Afolabi Imoukhuede, who spoke on behalf of the Federal Government in Abuja, today, said the funds were utilized in payment of the N30,000 monthly stipend to the 500,000 youths engaged under the scheme.
“It is every simple in talking about amount that has been invested. I am saying that in Batch 1, they started earning from December 2016, so roughly we invest N72 billion annually just for Batch 1 alone. That is aside from the gadgets that they get and aside from from all the sponsored trainings that they get.
“For instance, all the training on agric for N-Agro, training for health for those who are in health, we sponsor all of that through the federal agencies, ministry of agriculture and ministry of health.
“So direct in our people is N30,000 x 200,000 = N6 billion every month for the first batch which started in 2016. So they have been there for over two years, that is N72 billion multiply by two years or thereabout.
“But since August last year, the wage bill moved from N6 billion to N15 billion because it’s now 500,000 of them that earn N30,000 monthly.
“We have been on N15 billion for almost one year because by end of July it will be one year that we have been making that investment every month.
“So if you put it together that just tells you how much investment we have made and like I have said, we don’t owe anyone because the money is paid directly to them not through a proxy”, Imoukhuede said.
The N-Power programme is one of the National Social Investment Programmes (NSIP) introduced by President Muhammadu Buhari to solve the employability problems being faced by Nigerian youths after graduation.