The Federal Government is targeting over 160,000 poor and vulnerable rural women to benefit from the N20,000 cash grant across the country to cushion the effects of COVID-19 pandemic.
The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajiya Sadiya Umar-Faruk, made the disclosure at the launch of the grant on Wednesday in Katsina, where 6,800 rural women would benefit.
Umar-Faruk said: “We are targeting over 160,000 poor and vulnerable rural women in Nigeria for the N20,000 grant, to uplift their economic status.
“Our rural women with disability will also be included.
“It is my hope that the beneficiaries will use this opportunity to increase their income, enhance their food security and contribute toward improving their families.
“The N20,000, will go a long way in supporting any serious woman to start a business.
“What is most important is how judiciously you utilise the money.”
The Minister said over N9.5 billion was received by Katsina State, under the Conditional Cash Transfer programme, from the inception of this administration to date.
According to Umar-Faruk, the grants had impacted on the lives of over 142,474 vulnerable households in the state as 12 local governments were currently benefitting from the programme.
The Minister listed the benefitting local governments to include Bakori, Batagarawa, Baure, Bindawa, Dandume, Ingawa, Kaita, Kankara, Mani, Musawa, Rimi and Danmusa.
The Minister also said the Federal Government, in partnership with World Bank, had designed a Safety Net programme for Nigeria, that included cash transfer, as well as a COVID-19 rapid response register.
Umar-Faruk said: “The President has approved one million beneficiaries in the country to be given another N5,000 for the next six months to cushion the effects of COVID-19.
“This time around, we are going to target the urban poor and the artisans who lost their small businesses as a result of the pandemic.”
In his remarks, the state Deputy Governor, Mannir Yakubu, who represented Governor Aminu Masari at the occasion, commended the Federal Government for the grant.
Yakubu pointed out that the government had done so much through its social intervention programme to uplift the living condition of people in the country, since its inception, and urged the beneficiaries to ensure judicious use of the grant to enhance their livelihoods.