Poverty Alleviation: President Buhari Sends NSIP Bill to Senate

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By Adedapo Adesanya

President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday sent a bill to formally establish the National Social Investment Programme (NSIP) to the Senate.

The President said the NSIP Bill would provide a legal and institutional framework for the programme.

He explained in the letter read in plenary by the Senate President, Mr Ahmad Lawan, that consideration and passage of the bill will provide the enabling law for the effective implementation of the programme.

He said it was geared towards poverty alleviation of vulnerable Nigerians.

Part of the letter read: “The National Social Investment Programme Establishment Bill seeks to provide a legal and institutional framework for the establishment of the NSIP for the assistance and empowerment of the poor and vulnerable people in Nigeria.”

The NSIP was put together by the federal government following the outbreak of the global COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.

The federal government has also been injecting N500 billion into the programme annually since then.

Recall that two out of every three Nigerians are poor and experience just over one-quarter of all possible deprivations in terms of health, education, living standards, and work and shocks.

This was disclosed by the National Bureau of Statistics disclosed in the 2022  (NBS) Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) Report, which put that over 130 million Nigerians are multidimensionally poor.

A breakdown of the dimensions of poverty used for the MPI includes nutrition, food insecurity, Time to healthcare, school attendance, Years of schooling and School lag.

Others are water, water reliability, sanitation, housing materials, cooking fuel, assets, unemployment, underemployment, and security shock.

Among other things, the report showed that 65 per cent of poor people, which equates to 86 million Nigerians, live in the North, while 35 per cent, nearly 47 million, live in the South.

Mr Buhari, in two other separate requests, seeks the consideration and passage of the National Library Establishment Bill 2022.

The proposed law, according to him, will provide the legal framework for the maintenance of the National Library of Nigeria in line with global practices.

The final request of the president to the federal lawmakers dwells on the consideration and passage of an executive bill on the Federal Produce Inspection Service.

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