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Kogi State Governor, His Excellency Yahaya Bello, CON, on Tuesday in Lokoja, announced the establishment of the State’s Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation.

He said this significant step aligned with the overarching vision of the administration of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, encapsulated in the #RenewedHope agenda, which aims to uplift 50 million Nigerians from poverty annually.

The Governor made the announcement during the official kick-off of the Federal Government’s Grant for Vulnerable program under the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation at the Government House, in Lokoja.

He emphasised that the necessary legal framework and legislative authority for the creation of this ministry had already been meticulously addressed.

The Grant for Vulnerable Groups, specifically targeted at the most economically disadvantaged members of the society, will provide beneficiaries with a cash sum of N20,000.

Governor Bello, while commending President Tinubu’s visionary approach and genuine commitment to combating poverty in Nigeria, asserted that the grant would effectively contribute to the administration’s goal of pulling millions of Nigerians out of the poverty bracket.

He highlighted the various initiatives undertaken by his administration to reduce and eliminate poverty in Kogi State. These include free education in primary and secondary schools, quarterly distribution of food palliatives, and free healthcare program for pregnant women and children.

Additionally, the government has undertaken the responsibility of covering examination fees for public school students, releasing funds such as the N497 million disbursed for the 2024 WAEC fees in October.

The Governor attributed these policies to the administration’s Zero-out-School-Children initiative, which has yielded substantial results. He expressed confidence that the Governor-elect, Ahmed Usman Ododo, would build upon these achievements and strengthen ties with the federal and local governments for the overall welfare of the people.

During the ceremony, the Honourable Minister for Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Dr. Betta Edu, congratulated the beneficiaries and commended Kogi women for their unwavering support for the APC-led administration at both the federal and state levels.

She noted that, beyond the Grant for Vulnerable Groups, the Federal Government had implemented over 20 social programs targeting poverty alleviation, food security, and human capital development.

The minister revealed that, as part of the inaugural phase in Kogi State, a total of 3,000 individuals benefited from the program.

The State Commissioner for Finance, Budget, and Economic Planning, Asiwaju Idris Asiru, lauded the Federal Government’s initiative, and commended Governor Yahaya Bello for rolling out numerous initiatives to combat poverty, socio-economic inequality, and enhance security in the state.

ONOGWU Muhammed
Chief Press Secretary to the Governor

December 5, 2023.