From the statistics rolled yesterday by Vice Yemi Osinbajo, Nigerian women have benefited more from the various intervention programmes of President Muhammadu Buhari, especially the N38 billion loan so far disbursed by the current administration.
Osinbajo said the Buhari administration since 2015 till date designed and implemented the programmes to improve the health, education and socio-economic conditions of the Nigerian people, especially women, children and youths.
The vice president stated this yesterday in Abuja at an event to mark six years of the Future Assured, an initiative of the Aisha Buhari Foundation.
Also yesterday, Osinbajo spoke at the public presentation of Senator Ken Nnamani’s book, “Standing Strong.”
Osinbajo, in a statement issued by his media aide, Laolu Akande, at the Future Assured event, said “the very future of Nigeria and our communities depend on how well we address the many concerns of women and children in our communities, especially the focal areas of health, education and economic empowerment.
“So, of the 2.4 million beneficiaries of the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme, 1.2 million were women – that is 56.4 per cent of beneficiaries. A total of N38 billion in loans has been disbursed over the last four years. Of the 1.1 million beneficiaries of the Conditional Cash Transfers, over 98 per cent of the beneficiaries are women.
“For our youth employment programme N-Power, of the 526,000 employed, 40.4 per cent are females. And of the 106,074 cooks in our Home-Grown School Feeding Programme, 97 per cent are females.
“Of 94,318 artisan beneficiaries of the programme, 40,386 are female artisans, i.e., over 41 per cent of beneficiaries. And so far, 35 per cent of all MSMEs grants are females. And all of these are deliberate affirmative action to ensure that women benefit proportionately,” he said.
According to him,“We implemented a payroll support programme which was designed to mitigate income losses in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, and of the 307,173 employees that have benefited, 130,880 or 43 per cent of the beneficiaries are female-owned businesses,” he said.
The vice president said the government agrees with Future Assured’s belief that all social indices can be influenced if the health, education and economic status of the population are improved upon. And that is the case, clearly, women constitute half our population and the youth are at least 60 per cent of that population. Women especially, young girls, continue to face problems of every kind and this problem mutates as the social pressures increase with every passing day.”
“Since the COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdowns, it has been shown by empirical studies that the rates of dropouts, especially of girls, have increased, child marriages also increased, adolescent childbearing, and gender-based violence, all these indices increased.
Aside from the First Lady, Hajiya Aisha Buhari, other dignitaries present at the event include the wife of the Vice President, Mrs Dolapo Osinbajo; Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State; Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire; his counterpart in the Niger Delta Affairs Ministry, Sen. Godswill Akpabio, and top United Nations officials, among others.
While extolling the leadership qualities of Sen Nnamani, Prof. Osinbajo said “the first thing you notice about Ken Nnamani, especially as you observe the characteristics of politics and politicians, is an act of desperation to occupy political office.”
Directing his comments to the former President of the Senate, the VP said “it is clear that you want to serve, but not at all cost.”
He observed that the “lack of desperation has greatly helped him in having the courage of his convictions. This is why even at the risk of losing his senate presidency at the time, he stood against the notorious third term agenda and he stood very strong.