Bello inaugurates special public works with 21,000 beneficiaries
By Kola Adeyemi [NAN]
Gov. Yahaya Bello of Kogi has inaugurated the Federal Government’s Special Public Work Programme in Lokoja with 21,000 persons as beneficiaries.
This is contained in a statement issued on Sunday in Lokoja by the Press Secretary to the governor, Mr. Onogu Mohammed.
Mohammed said that Bello while inaugurating the programme commended the Federal Government for initiating the 774,000-job scheme, saying it would curb youth restiveness.
He said that the scheme which was started in the state on Jan. 16, would also make Nigerians to feel the impact of the government and boost the economy of all the 774 local governments in the country.
It added that Bello charged the 21,000 beneficiaries from the state to take the advantage of the scheme to improve their skills and become self-reliant.
The governor promised to introduce similar scheme so as to complement the efforts being made by President Muhammadu Buhari to make life meaningful for the ordinary people.
He decried the delay in the takeoff of the programme, urging the elite in the country to forgo their selfish interests for the collective progress and development of Nigeria.
Earlier in her speech, the Minister of state for the Federal Capital Development Territory, Hajia Ramatu Tijani, said that the special public work programme was initiated to address unemployment and poverty.
Tijani then charged the beneficiaries to be diligent in whatever roles assigned to them under the scheme.
The Minister also called on the beneficiaries to see the scheme as an opportunity for them to better their welfare, charging them to reciprocate the gesture by shunning violence and other vices.
She also commended the governor for the pragmatic steps being taken by his administration to address the social and economic challenges facing the people of the state.
In his remarks, the Acting Director – General, National Directorate of Employment (NDE), Mallam Abubakar Fikpo, described the programme as a very significant step in Nigeria’s quest to win the war against mass unemployment.
According to him, the scheme will also help in the fight against poverty and joblessness among the nation’s youths.
” The labour absorptive capacity of this special public works programme makes it a very crucial vehicle in the job creation process and maintenance of public infrastructure,” he said.
The Chairman of the state selection committee, Mr. Raji Afolabi, in his speech applauded the Federal and the state governments for their efforts to make life better for the citizens.
He explained that the programme would go a long way in improving the socio- economic wellbeing of the 21, 0000 beneficiaries from the state. (NAN)
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