N-Power Batch C: One year after Registration, delay continues - Applicants lament, call on FG to fast-track engagement processes

The N-power Programme is designed as a lifeline for teeming youths who have been badly hit by the increasing rate of unemployment in Nigeria.

As a poverty alleviation and job creation strategy, it targets youths within the ages of 18-35 years with the goal of ensuring that they are economically more active and possess the right vocations skill-set to attract gainful employment after graduating from the Programme,  through enabling each beneficiary acquire a bouquet usable skills.

However, the Applicants of the Batch C of the Scheme have decried the persistent delay in engaging the beneficiaries upon a very long wait after registration in 2020.

The last recruitment of Beneficiaries into the N-power Programme was in 2018 with the engagement of 300,000 Batch B N-power Beneficiaries.

There disengagement alongside the 200,000 Batch A in June, 2020 was followed by the immediate commencement of the Batch C Registration which attracted over 4 million applications.

Since June, 2020 till date, the Batch C N-power Beneficiaries are yet to be engaged into the programme.

Commencing the online Screening Test for the Applicants in March, 2021 immediately after the launch of NASIMS Portal www.nasims.gov.ng, the Humanitarian Affairs Ministry announced its intention of engaging 1,000,000 Nigerians in two separate streams of 500,000 each, as part of the President's policy to unfailingly lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in 10 years, especially through innovative Youth Empowerment and Gainful Employment.

Till date, none of the two Streams of the Batch C N-power has been fully engaged into the Programme.

Reacting to the persistent delay, the applicants of the Scheme have taken to their Social groups to express their displeasure in the delay while calling on the Federal Government to fast-track the engagement of the N-power Beneficiaries in order to enable the youths survive the present economic condition of the country without delving into social vices.

Abdul Mohammed in a comment said he had planned to expand his farm within the raining season through the N30,000 monthly Stipend since he has completed his Biometric Enrollment after being shortlisted, but the delay in the engagement is making his plans futile.

Similar was the comment of Uzoma Ubochioma who said she has collected loan from her "Contribution group" to expand her poultry farm on a monthly interest. The delay of the Batch C engagement means more interest on my path, she lamented.

Stephen Essien lamented to have visited his State's NSIP Office for some enquiries but the response he got, was not encouraging.

"To my greatest shock, even those people there don't know much about the Batch C engagement. They keeping mentioning Abuja, Abuja."

"Only one person opened up that they are barely intimated from Abuja unlike before", he added 

Imoleayo David said the Federal Government should please deploy them as it will save them from this present economic condition.

"Since 2019 when I finished my Youth Service, I have applied for jobs severally but it was only this N-power that answered my prayers. Please I want to start work and recieve by payment, at least for upkeep," he stated.

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