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World Bank increases palliative loan disbursement to Nigeria



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The World Bank has increased its disbursement to Nigeria from about $300 million to $315 million, out of the $800 million approved for the National Social Safety-Net Program Scale Up (NSSP-SU).

According to the Implementation Status & Results Report for the project, about 42% of the entire loan is yet to be disbursed, as there is a pending balance of about $428.31 million.

Based on a document obtained from the World Bank, out of the $800 million, about $600 million will be spent on Economic Shock Responsive Cash Transfer (ESR-CT), $147 million will be spent on Extended Regular Cash Transfer (ER-CT) for the poor and the vulnerable, and $53 million will be spent on the delivery system strengthening and project management.

The document further disclosed that the Federal Government planned to reach about five million beneficiaries by mid-December.

However, approximately 1.5 million households have received cash transfers, which is only about 0.1% of the project’s overall target of 15 million households.

Also, the initial project goal was to release N5,000 monthly to poor and vulnerable Nigerians but the Federal Government wrote to the World Bank to modify this goal and increase the cash to N25,000 monthly over three months.

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“The Federal Ministry of Finance has approved the commencement of disbursements and project implementation. Since then, the project has made an initial drawdown of USD 315 million, and commenced initial cash transfers to poor and vulnerable households, with about 1.5 million households already receiving transfers in their accounts. The task team is supporting the project to continuously expand cash transfers to households, with a target of reaching at least 5 million beneficiaries by mid-December.

“The Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation has communicated the government’s decision to change the program parameters focused on the economic shock response. The decision is now to cover 15 million households with cash transfers of N25,000 over 3 months.”

It was also disclosed that the project-implemented units are working with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the National Identity Management (NIMC) to efficiently enrol beneficiaries while simultaneously issuing a Bank Verification Number (BVN) and/or National Identity Number (NIN) for account operations.

Earlier, the CBN announced that all bank accounts without BVN and NIN will be placed on “Post no Debit” effective April 2024. The apex bank also stated that all the BVN or NIN attached to and/or associated with accounts or wallets must be electronically revalidated by January 31, 2024.

The National Social Safety Net Programme-Scale Up was approved by the World Bank on December 16, 2021, and is expected to run till June 30, 2024.


The $800 million programme is to be implemented by the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs & Poverty Alleviation.

With this loan, the Federal Government plans to run a monthly cash transfer programme for poor and vulnerable Nigerians, who have been hit hard by recent policies, such as the fuel subsidy removal.

In October 2023, President Bola Tinubu formally launched the promised conditional cash transfer programme targeted at 15 million households nationwide billed to receive N75,000 within three months.

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