The over 125,550 beneficiaries of the National Social Investment Programme, N-SIP, in Enugu state have given appreciations to President Muhammadu Buhari for the programme which they said had affected their lives positively.
They also made the appeal to the federal government to ensure the continuity of the programme beyond the Buhari administration. They lauded Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi for providing the enabling environment that made all components of the programme thrive in the state.
The components of the N-SIP initiative under the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs include the M-Power, the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT), Graduate Entrepreneurship, the Home Grown School Feeding Programme (HGSF), and Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP).
In a rally in Enugu on Sunday, the coordinator of the beneficiaries in the state, Mr Mark Chikamadu, said under the programme, Enugu State benefited from all the components of N-SIP and would continue to benefit from the programme which made them find it necessary to give appreciation to President Buhari, the minister for humanitarian affairs, Sadiya Umar Farouq, and Governor Ugwuanyi of Enugu State.
He said, “We are asking Mr President to do everything possible to enact a law that will domesticate the programme in Nigeria and in Enugu State so that when they leave, as a government is a continuum, they will continue to sustain the programme because the beneficiaries are yearning to continue the programme.”
A cook in the Home Grown School Feeding Programme, Mrs Chinyere Ebue, said she was satisfied with the school feeding programme because it helped to improve her condition since 2017.
“Since I lost my husband, it has helped me feed my children and I am very grateful,” she said.
The head of Independent Monitors in the state, Mr Ugwochukwu Akpa, said he was satisfied with the service delivery in the schools benefiting from the school meals programme, noting however that most schools were not captured in the programme.
According to him, “For instance, in Awgu local government area, we have more than 60 primary schools, but the ones that are receiving the stipends from the government are about 55, and most times the number of pupils fluctuate that in the first term a particular school could have 50 and the feeding is for primary one, two and three.
“In a particular school, they were 89 pupils last term, but this them they are 98 and there is no way for the government to adjust the money they are sending. Some people may be eating and others will watch, but that is not the case, we will rather ration the food to accommodate every member of the class.”