By Kayode Adeoti
Some beneficiaries of the Federal Government’s Cash Transfer Scheme in Kwara State have continued to lament what they described as illegal deduction by officials of the scheme from their N5,000 monthly stipend, National Pilot can report.
Some of the scheme beneficiaries who spoke anonymously with this medium at the weekend said several efforts to stop the deduction of N500 from their monthly stipend have yielded no positive result.
Also, a beneficiary who simply identified herself as Mrs Bilikis said government informed them of the decision to incorporate them into cooperative groups which they declined.
She said, “Though what is being deducted is small but we don’t want it. They asked us to register with cooperative society at a time, to save certain amount monthly but that plan never saw the light of the day.”
Responding to the allegation in a telephone chat with this medium, the Focal Person for the scheme in Kwara State, Elder Ayobola Samuel, said the deduction was meant to help the beneficiaries inculcate ‘saving spirit’.
“We want to inculcate into the beneficiaries, the spirit of saving and investment. They are supposed to form themselves into cooperative groups to be contributing N500 out of the N5,000 monthly, not that anyone is extorting or taking any money from them for hidden purpose. We just want them to save for the future and they are still the owner of the money.
“Instead of collecting and spending the whole money collected from us, they can save 10 per cent of it and it is the officials of the scheme that are carrying out the exercise,” he divulged.
Recalled that as part of the electioneering campaign of President Muhammadu Buhari and the All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2015 promised N5,000 monthly stipend to one million poorest and the most vulnerable Nigerians through the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) scheme of its Social Investment Programme (SIP).