HM Betta Narrates Story Behind Unpaid Npower Stipends And Nexit Package
The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, Dr. Betta Edu, has provided insights into the reasons behind the delay in unpaid Npower stipends and the Nexit package in a recent interview. According to the Minister, there were several issues and challenges encountered when they assumed office regarding the Npower program:
Over-Registration: One issue was that a larger number of individuals were allowed to register for the Npower program than the available slots or resources could accommodate.
Delayed Payments: Funds were allocated for the payment of beneficiaries under the Npower program, but these funds were not disbursed to the beneficiaries in a timely manner by the managers responsible for fund disbursement.
Ineligible Beneficiaries: Some individuals were on the payment list who were not supposed to be there. Some had completed their Npower program over a year ago but still expected to receive payments.
The Minister further explained that there were beneficiaries who had finished their Npower program but still believed they should continue receiving payments, leading to the need for an exit plan and exit payment, which is the Nexit package.
To address these issues, a ministerial committee was set up, with the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry heading it. The committee included representatives from the Npower program, the National Social Investment Program (NSIP) National Coordinators, and others. Their mandate was to investigate and address the challenges facing the Npower program.
Dr. Betta Edu mentioned that she received the first report from the committee, which stated that 20,000 people had been paid, but she questioned the total number of beneficiaries and the time period covered. The report indicated that these payments were for beneficiaries who had completed their programs from October to December of the previous year.
The Minister expressed concern about the delay in payments and the challenges associated with funds remaining within the Npower program for an extended period. She emphasized the need for due verification to determine which beneficiaries should be paid.
As a result, the available funds under the Npower program will be used to pay beneficiaries after a thorough verification process to ensure that they are legitimate and eligible beneficiaries. Dr. Betta Edu also noted that some individuals who have been sending messages are not even registered in the Npower program.
In summary, the delay in Npower stipends and Nexit package payments was attributed to issues such as over-registration, delayed fund disbursement, and the presence of ineligible beneficiaries on the payment list. The government has taken steps to address these challenges and ensure that payments are made to genuine beneficiaries after verification.