774,000 SPW Jobs: Thousands of Participants yet to get Stipends, Daily Trust Investigation reveals

The Participants of the Federal Government Special Public Works Programme have decried the persistent delay in effecting the payment of their Stipends even as the Programme has ended 2 months ago.

The Programme which engaged 774,000 Nigerians across the Federation (1,000 per LGA) for 3 months, as part of the President Mohammadu Buhari's palliative measures to cushion the effect of COVID-19 pandemic on vulnerable Nigerians, commenced on 5th January, 2021.

An investigation by Daily Trust revealed that many of the selected beneficiaries in the states who have completed the public works within the three months provided (January to April) are yet to be paid the N20,000 promised them.

In Borno State, some participants said they were paid for only one month.

Hajja Fanna from Gamboru in Ngala Local Government Area who was among the 27,000 unemployed youths said she was still waiting to collect her remaining N40,000.

Another beneficiary from Jere LGA, who would not want to be named, said he participated in the programme but still awaits his payments.

In Kaduna State, investigation revealed that many participants were yet to receive their payment months after the programme was flagged off nationwide.

One of the beneficiaries from Kaduna North who simply identified himself as Jibril said he had not received any allowance since the programme started.

“Most of us from Kaduna North Local Government have not been paid and we don’t know why because the programme had ended in April,” he said.

In Oyo State, only about 30 per cent of the applicants who were using one of the stipulated banks got N20,000 stipends, Daily Trust gathered.

A housewife, who refused to be named, said: “I have not been paid. Even my friend had done her own documentation but she had not received anything from the bank. I am not convinced that they will pay because we are currently not doing any job.

“I think the scheme is a scam; it is possible some people have collected our money because nothing is impossible in Nigeria.”

Findings showed that most of the participants in Cross River State have not received the monthly stipends of N20,0000. 

Miss Regina Akpabio who resides in Calabar South said she had visited the bank a number of times and filled the required forms but no luck.

Another participant, Dopse Edet, expressed dismay that months after the payment was supposed to have started, they were yet to receive even one month pay.

Some beneficiaries of the NDE public works programme in Ondo State alleged that they were paid N16,000 instead of N20,000.

“The money was given to us by hand instead of being paid into our bank accounts,” noted one of the benefactors from Owo Local Government Area.

In Kwara State, beneficiaries of the public work scheme across local governments complained of irregularity and what they described as outright denial of their payments in some instances.

The Investigation by Daily Trust https://www.dailytrust.com.ng/774000-jobs-thousands-of-participants-yet-to-get-stipend revealed that many Participants in the Programme are yet to get their first Stipend while some of the participants only got first Stipend of N20,000 out of the 3 months owed Stipends.

The Director General of the National Directorate of Employment (NDE), Abubakar Nuhu Fikpo when contacted by Daily Trust said:

“Yes, it is true; we are in the process of paying the participants for one month because that is the funds we have received that are in our custody. Of course, we received part of the money that was meant for the projects. The money was meant for the stipends as well as the purchase of the equipment in the execution of the projects.

“You know it is a special public works programme which involves the maintenance of infrastructures. Therefore, it requires equipment for the participants to use.

“So, out of what they gave to us, we have used part of it to buy equipment and what was left was just adequate to pay for one month. As such, we have been in the process of paying their stipends for that one month.” 

Fikpo's statement however contradicts the earlier announcement by the Minister of States, Labour and Employment, Mr Festus Keyamo that the Federal Government has concluded plans to commence Second Payment to the beneficiaries. 

Related774,000 SPW Job: FG set to commence Second Payment to beneficiaries 

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