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N-Power: Incorrect bank details reason for delay in payment for some beneficiaries in Kogi

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N-Power: Incorrect bank details reason for delay in payment for some beneficiaries in Kogi

By John Akubo,

Beneficiaries of the N-Power program in Kogi State are upbeat about how to save from the monthly stipend to be able to practice what they are learning to be self reliant after the program. 

However most of the that spoke to the Guardian indicated they are yet to receive any alert three months after the program started. 

Reason for the delay according to them is not unconnected with the discrepancies between the information they supplied and the details of their BVN.

One of the beneficiaries from Lokoja Local Government Funmi Olowosulu said she is yet to get any alert since she started because of some inconsistencies in the information she sent to N-Power and the details on her BVN.

Olowosulu explained that she was advised to get the print out of her BVN details which she has done.

She said the problem started when her middle name was replaced with the first name.

“My surname name is Olowosulu but on the N-Ppwer Power the name is showing Beatrice as first name. I submitted my name as Beatrice Oloosulu Funmilola but when the list of N-Power came out it was Beatrice Olowosulu, it was interchanged.”

One of her major challenge was that she was posted to a local Government very far from her resident for which she complained and she was redeployed to Lokoja

“I was later redeployed to LGEA primary school Lokoguma which is a stone throw from my residence.”

Another beneficiary Umar Abdulrasheed, said he was posted to Ihima Survey Farmland where he spends N80 on transportation on daily bases which he said is not really having much effect. 

He however observed that, since he started he has been indebted to his neighbors who have been lending him money for transport as he is yet to receive any alert. 

He said the name on the N-Power list is Umar Abdul while his account name is Umar Abdulrasheed.

To correct the anomaly he said he has printed his BVN details with other details written behind which he has submitted to the N-Power State coordinator in Lokoja. 

Abdulrasheed said the experience at the primary assignment has been rewarding having been taught how to farm fish and feed them, and after every three days when the water would have been dirty he now knows how to remove it. 

He said he has also learnt a lot about gari processing from the peeling of cassava to grating and bagging them for fermentation and the final stage of frying. 

“I have interest in fish farming and the rearing of pigs. If I start receiving my monthly stipend I will be saving to have way for me to start my own at the end.”

Aina Olumayowa Helen who was posted to Planned Parenthood Federation of Nigeria (PPFN) In Egbe Yagba West Local Government Area is not really having any challenge. 

She said she has received one month stipend of N30000 and her place of posting is within a trekkable distance.

She commended the federal Government for the initiative that has given her a job opportunity from where she has started saving for another business. 

The focal person for Kogi State Honorable Ibrahim Adoga Explained that the difficulty some of the beneficiaries were self inflicted.

He said they were mistakes made while they were filling the forms on line. 

“It is not entirely our duty to correct their mistakes, it is the beneficiaries responsibility because they are responsible for all the details they send on the website.”

He said they know the channels through which to communicate to resolve all the issues they are having currently.

Adoga who is also the special adviser to Governor Yahaya Bello on Multilateral said when they were selected, there went through stages when they were to supply their Bank details,  unfortunately most of them had used other people’s BVN,  or bank accounts, other peoples’ addresses or date of birth.

Continuing he said some of them did not put their real certificates so basically the problem they are encountering in terms of non payment is their fault. 

“What we are asking the beneficiaries to do now is to ensure they return to the website and correct all these information. For those that have imputed wrong BVN they are not going to tally with their names, they should make corrections with their BVN.

 “It is only when they have done that that they can get their payment. They did not send all these information through us, they sent them directly through the website of the N-Power.”

He disclosed that they are currently sending our monitoring and evaluation Team  to the various local Governments. 

Adoga said they have already received the names of those who are yet to be paid from the vice President’s office in Abuja and they are sending them the information in batches after being corrected.

According to him,  “The issues are basically account and BVN because as of the time they registered they had no accounts and BVN so they just used other peoples account numbers so they are having to face these hurdles.”

Femi Bolaji the State coordinator of N-Power in the office of the focal person for Kogi State Said the N-Power program was officially flagged off in Kogi State on December 1st, 2016 after the selection of 200000 beneficiaries Nation wide.

“4500 were selected for Kogi State, we started phased flag off, the first happened in Lokoja for the beneficiaries from Lokoja/Kogi Local Government, the next day we moved to Kabba where we flagged off for Kogi West senatorial zone for. The local Governments in that axis.”

He said from there they moved to Okene to flag off for the central and on the 8th of December 2016 we flagged off at Anyigba for the Kogi East senatorial district. 

He said the essence is to carryout physical verification of beneficiaries. 

“We must emphasize that this is the first time the Federal Government is carrying out massive employment totaling 200000 persons driven by technology unlike previously when applicants would be gathered at some location and they would be made to go through some physical training, aptitude test and all thaT. 

He said the beneficiaries were assessed on line and all their documents submitted on line. “That brought about the need to do physical verification. After that was done we now did postings to the places of primary assignment, we posted them to ministry of Agriculture, ministry of education and the ministry of Health. So in essence we have N-Agro,  N-Health and N-Teach totalling 4500

He said they encountered great challenges caused by the beneficiaries themselves because while processing their online application Most of them did not input correct account number and correct BVN.

The coordinator said some of them who were married imputed their maiden bank details but what we met there during search is their married information and N-Power would not pay such beneficiaries of the information in the N-Power database does not match what is in the BVN so we had a lot of rejections. 

“That accounted for why many beneficiaries were not paid and that is a great challenge for us. 

He said by January Out of the N4000 they had paid 2113 adding that as of March they have 3500 that have been captured for payment out of the 4000 that were verified and posted. 

“We have asked beneficiaries to go to their banks and get printout of their BVN details which we would send to Abuja which will tally with their information.”

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Senate panel unravels N443bn subsidy scam by NNPC

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Senate panel unravels N443bn subsidy scam by NNPC

The Senate Committee on Public Accounts on Wednesday uncovered a scam involving N443B by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) which allegedly lavished the money on oil subsidy in 2016 without budgetary provision.

The panel, therefore, summoned the leadership of the nations oil firm to brief it on the expenditure.

The committee’s chairman, Senator Matthew Urhoghide, issued the summon yesterday when the panel considered a 2016 report by the Auditor-General for the Federation.

“During the examination of subsidy records provided by Federation Account Allocation Committee (FAAC), it was observed that total subsidy paid during the year 2016 was N443,940,559,974.80,” the audit report.

The breakdown of the fund showed that N403.3 billion was paid to oil marketers, while interest & foreign exchange differential gulped N40.6 billion, totalling N443.9 billion.

The fund, according to the report, was spent in 2016 without budgetary provision and was deducted at source.

“This reflects continuing weaknesses in the budgeting process adopted by the Federal Government,” it added.

Responding to the audit report, the Accountant General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris, told the committee that the NNPC would be in better position to explain the extra-budgetary spending.

The Chairman of the committee, Senator Matthew Urhoghide summoned the NNPC Group Managing Director, Melee Kyari to give explanation on the expenditure.

In a related development, the committee also summoned the Central Bank of Nigeria over alleged disappearance of $9.5 million interest from Investment Petroleum Profit Tax (PPT), Royalty and Foreign Excess Crude.

The invitation of the Apex Bank in the country was sequel to the 2016 Auditor General Report which accused the Central Bank of Nigeria failing to present documents supporting the investment for verification.

The Senate observed no letter supporting the investment of the fund and the actual amount invested were not made known.

The Query reads, “During the examination of transfers to Forefinger Excess PPT/Royalty and Foreign Excess Crude Accounts it was observed that during the year 2016, amount totalling $6 million and $3.5 million were credited to the Foreign PPT/Royalty and Foreign Excess Crude Account as interest on Funds investments.

“The authority for placing the funds which yielded the above interests totaling $9.5 in deposit account, the principal sums deposited, the tenor and rate of interest were no made available for audit verification.

“This observation had also been a subject of my reprts since 2017 without any positive response from Central Bank of Nigeria

“Records made available for audit further revealed that the balance in the foreign PPT/Royaltt and Foreign Excess Crude a accounts as at 28th December 2016 were USD0.00 and USD, 251,826 respectively

“This suggest the foreign PPT/Royalthy was depleted before the year end.

“The Accountant General has been requested to provide the authority for the funds invested, tenor of the investment, rate unrest payable, certficate for the funds invested and forward same for audit verification.”

The Chairman of the Committee, Senator Mathew Urhoghide however asked the Accountant General of the Federation, to respond to issue raised in the Auditor General Report.

The Accountant General was unable to present any document on the issue raised by the Committee.

He further told the lawmakers that the Office of Accountant General has sent a letter to the Central Bank of Nigeria for clarification on the issue raised.

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FG declares its readiness to deploy 5G network after precautionary measures

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FG declares its readiness to deploy 5G network after precautionary measures

By Aminci Audu

The minister of communications and Digital Economy Isah Ali Pantami has declared that Nigeria is ready for 5th Generation Network (5G) as long as the major challenges are taken care of.

Pantami spoke yesterday, at a one day investigative hearing on the present status of 5G network organised by the joint Senate committee on communication, sScience and Technology, ICT and Cybercrime and Primary Healthcare and Communicable Diseases.

The minister in his presentation allayed the fear among Nigerians over the planned deployment of the network saying the Federal Government has taken all necessary precautions by investigating through research and trial on all issues raised.

He said “The position is that we are almost at the final stage. So now, Nigeria is ready for 5G as long as we address the major challenges.”

“We have not gotten there, wether we will deploy 5G but we are on track conducting research, investigations, engaging stakeholders and definitely if all issues are addressed, the executive will support the deployment of 5G in Nigeria.”

He noted that so far no negative impacts has been established from the research and trial carried both locally and at the international level. 

On the speculation that the 5G network escalated the COVID-19 he said there is no link between 5G and COVID-19.
“And there is no relationship between 5G and any desease. The only issue being raised usually is about radiation.  But people don’t realise that the radiation of 4G is more harmful than that of 5G. 
“The radiation of microwave oven at home is more harmful than that of the 5G. The radiation of even the smart phone itself is even more harmful that that of 5G

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SELF backs Sylva over choice of Saipem on Bonny NLNG Train 7 contract

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SELF backs Sylva over choice of Saipem on Bonny NLNG Train 7 contract

The South-south Emerging Leaders Forum (SELF) has faulted allegations of wrong doing leveled against the Minister of State for Petroleum Chief Timipre Sylva over the choice of Saipem, an Italian firm to handle the Bonny NLNG Train 7 contract.

SELF in a statement argued that the deal also endorsed by the Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Local Content Board Engr. Simbi Wabote was in the best interest of the country.

SELF position was in response to an online publication which accused the duo of bribe taking running into millions of naira in the deal.

SELF warned the publisher of the medium , Mr Jackson Ude, to desist from blackmailing leaders of the South-south extraction in a bid to score political goals.

Urging the Publisher of the online medium to show proof his allegation, SELF noted: “We strongly condemn the allegation leveled by Pointblanknews.com and its sponsors, this is highly condemnable and viewed as a sponsored plot to instigate hate against the Minister and derail his concentrations.

“This is ridiculous and belittling of Jackson Ude, the face behind this blackmail for being petty to the ground level for publishing tissues of lies about the persons of Timipre Sylva and Simbi Wabote.

“Nigerians should not believe this and throw it into the dust bin. It’s incumbent on all well-meaning Nigerians to support the positive drive of Minister and collaborate with him, towards the actualization of the onerous task at stake.

“Although Jackson Ude and his medium Pointblanknews.com are criminally known for thriving in the business of blackmail, especially against the officeholders from the Niger Delta region. But this forum will henceforth resist this criminality by deploying all known instrumental of law to fight the faces behind these tissues of lies.

“This Forum is using this medium to warn the likes of Jackson Ude to stay away from Nigeria and the South-south most especially if they are not ready to turn a new leaf because the business of blackmail has long become outdated and unpopular.”

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