The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajia Sadiya Farouq, has warned independent monitors against “intimidating” the beneficiaries and contractors of the National Social Investment Programme (NSIP).
Farouq issued the warning on Wednesday in Awka during the launch of the Training/Onboarding Exercise for Stream 2 independent monitors of the programme.
“Any independent monitor found intimidating or harassing a beneficiary will be taken off the programme.
“Be informed that we have EFCC and DSS officials working with us on this programme.
“Those found culpable will be handed over to relevant authorities,” she said.
The minister, represented by the Director, Planning, Research and Statistics, Mr Ralph Obi, said that the job of the monitors was “to monitor the programme in communities, market clusters and schools.
“All we want you to do is to visit the schools, marketplaces and find out if the contractors engaged to provide feedings to the pupils are doing so.
“Whatever information you get, upload it to the ministry in Abuja.
“We are the people to know what to do with the information and not for you to go and harass anybody,” she said.
She further said that the monitors were engaged primarily to ensure the success of the programme in reducing poverty in the country.
The minister said that the Federal Government had invested so much financial resources in the programme.
She, however, regretted that the feelers from the public suggested that not much had been achieved.
Farouq said that 4,452 independent monitors were trained and enrolled in the stream 1 of the programmes in February and March 2021.
The Special Adviser to the Minister on Administration, Kingsley Ngene, advised the beneficiaries to take the training seriously in order not to make mistakes in the field.
Ngene said the training, having been launched on June 9 in Abuja, would be extended to the 36 states of the federation.
Some of the trainees, including Stella Ejimofor, George Uchechukwu and Nkiruka Nwoye, thanked the Federal Government for offering them the opportunity to be part of the programme.
They promised to discharge their duties in line with the knowledge they got from the training.
It was reported that 31 new independent monitors were recently engaged, plus the existing 91, bringing their number to 122.
The programmes under NSIP include the National Home-Grown School Feeding Programme, Government Enterprise Empowerment Programme, N-Power and Conditional Cash Transfer.