Covid-19: FG Releases N500Bn, Creates 800,000 Jobs – Presidency

 


The Federal Government’s Economic Sustainability Plan (ESP) helped Nigeria to cope with the economic shock caused by COVID-19.

The presidency said with the stimulus package, the economy did not decline as feared when the pandemic broke out.

Laolu Akande, a presidential spokesman in a statement said over 2 million jobs have been both created and saved, with N500billion released as at the end of May.

The breakdown indicates that 1.3 million jobs have been retained through interventions in the Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) space, including the Payroll Support.

The 774,000 jobs from the Public Works Programme and 26,021 jobs from construction /rehabilitation projects nationwide were among those newly created.

Akande said the figures were part of highlights from a virtual meeting of the Economic Sustainability Committee (ESC) measuring implementation presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on Monday.

Osinbajo noted that if the administration had the capacity to infuse the N2.3trillion into the economy, the current employment figures would be so high.

“Even with what we are able to do with the budget, growth figures at least indicate that things have not degenerated as badly as many had thought”, Osinbajo said.

Minister of State for Budget and Planning, Clem Agba, said the construction/rehabilitation of 3,707 km roads across the federation under Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA) is at 65% completion.

Over 6 million farmers have been enumerated, 3.6 million passed the first stage of validation and 2.4 million scaled the second validation stage.

The Minister confirmed 129,000 crop farmers and 38,333 animal farmers have been profiled for the Interest-Free Loan Support for the dry season farming cycle.

He reported that 485 water points have been constructed/rehabilitated by the Federal Ministry of Water Resources across the federation.

Agba said N500billion representing 100% of the total sum in the budget has been released to all the programmes of the ESP as at May 30, 2021.

The economic cluster received N202.462billion which represents 100% of the appropriation, while N61.589billion, also 100% appropriation, was released for the creation of jobs for youth and women.

The Social Intervention Programme and Support to Persons of Concern received N34.957billion; WASH Programme and Energy Support to Vulnerable Communities received N22.315billion.

The health system received N116billion; Security Forces N15.674billion, and the 36 States N50billion.

The Minister said N5billion has been released to support local airlines, ground handlers and other aviation allied businesses.

Dana, Overland, Airpeace, Azman, Aero, Arik, and Max Air got N2.84billion; 20 non-scheduled operators, cargo and private jet services, received N949,909,000; 5 ground handling operators, including NAHCO, SAHCO, Presion Aviation, Batuke Resources Ltd and Swissport Intl Ltd, got N233,333,000.

The Airport Car Hire Association of Nigeria received N196million; National Association of Nigerian Travel Agencies N196million; 7 In-Flight Catering Services Operators N233,333,000, Aviation Fuel Operators N233,333,000.

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