Senate Leader Muhammad Ndume on Sunday kicked against the plan to use online registration for selecting beneficiaries of the federal government’s N500 billion Social Intervention Fund.
Addressing journalists in Maiduguri, Mr. Ndume, who represents Borno South at the National Assembly, said that using internet registration for the programme would deprive many qualified Nigerians from benefiting.
“The N500 billion Social Intervention Fund has started on a wrong footing, so we are not going to agree; we are not going to let it pass like other previous interventions without tangible gains.
“We do not want it to be like the SureP where nobody was sure,” Mr. Ndume said.
He pointed out that the new concept on MPower requiring teachers, market women and graduates, to register online, was faulty.
“How can they say that everybody must go on-line and register when most states are off-line;
in fact, Borno is even worse than off-line,” Mr. Ndume said.
He said that registering on-line will end up in corrupt practice as some individuals used fake names to register.
“The National Assembly is going to insist that the programme must be done on Local Government Areas (LGA) basis, or even on ward basis, because there is no ward in Nigeria without a qualified graduate.
“So let each ward or LGA be represented like we did during the police recruitment,” Mr. Ndume said.
He said his position was based on the outcome of similar programs in the past.
“Most often what they do is to hire a consultant who will charge about 5 percent of the total money as his fee and by the time you remove 5 per cent of N 500 billion you have already started depleting the resources.
“Again the consultant will start asking the participants to go to one portal and register with scratch card, this is also unacceptable,” Mr. Ndume said.
He said that the National Assembly would take a stand on the issue next Wednesday to ensure that the right thing was done in the implementation of the programme.