Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on Wednesday night maintained that the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration has credible plans to get Nigeria out of poverty in spite of limited funds available to the country.
He made the remark at a town hall meeting tagged: ‘The Candidates’ organised by the MacArthur Foundation in collaboration with NTA and DARIA Media in Abuja.
According to him, the APC administration was dealing with poverty in many ways including monthly payment of N5,000 to the poorest Nigerians, home grown school feeding programme and the Tradermoni, where market women are given N10,000 each to start business.
He said “As of 2012 Nigeria had 112 million people living in extreme poverty. Today Nigeria has about 86 million people who are poor but it is higher than India.
“From 2010 to 2014 Nigeria earned the highest revenue in oil. Nigeria earned $383 billion. Poverty figure went from about 82 million people to about 112 million in 2012. That is the reason why we have the poverty problem.
“Unfortunately, with all this money we had poverty was not addressed, nothing was done about it.
“In three years of our own government $94 billion is what we made from oil revenue compared that to$383 billion, but we started the largest programme to tackle poverty in the history of this country,’’ he said.
The government, he said, was feeding 9.2million children daily under the school feeding programme to address the issue of malnutrition.
He said that no credible beneficiary could be traced to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) SURE-P Fund.
Osinbajo also said that the APC was different from the PDP because the APC manifesto was about social development of the country.
The Vice also said that the Federal Government’s fight against corruption is on course and that all monies returned to government by those who looted public treasury will be judiciously utilised to develop the country.
The vice president, however, said that the federal government had been able to block channels of looting the nation`s treasury through the Treasury Single Account (TSA).
He said that all returned looted funds would be used following budgetary process, saying that, in the case of properties, ones there was a final forfeiture, such property (asset) become the property of the state unless where there was a legal claim to it.
He, however, said that the mere fact that someone returned monies acquired through illegal means while holding public office did not make him a free person.
Speaking on the farmers’ herders clashes especially in Benue, the vice president attributed the development to climate change.
He said the development was getting worse because of desertification, adding that the federal government was collaborating with the country`s neighbours to address it.
He said the federal government was making efforts to recharge the Lake Charge which he noted was shrinking.
The vice president said that the long term plan to address the development was to create ranches, saying that water dams were presently being created by the federal government as a short term measure.
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