Kaduna Governor Uba Sani Labels Proposed Cash Transfer Policy a Scam
Governor Uba Sani of Kaduna state has strongly criticized the proposed cash transfer policy of the Federal Government, calling it a scam. In an interview with Arise Television’s News Night, Governor Sani expressed his concerns about the effectiveness of cash transfers, especially during the current critical time in the country.
According to Governor Sani, his experience as the Chairman of the Committee of Banking for four years in Nigeria and overseeing the Central Bank and the commercial sector has given him insights into the financial inclusion status of the rural population, particularly in the North West region. He cited statistics showing that about 70 to 75 percent of the rural population in the North West is financially excluded, meaning they do not even have bank accounts. This leads to his skepticism about the feasibility and effectiveness of the cash transfer policy.
President Bola Tinubu had earlier announced a plan for a monthly cash transfer of N8,000 to 12 million of the poorest households in the country for six months, as a measure to cushion the effects of the fuel subsidy removal. However, this proposal has received public outcry, leading the Federal Government to reconsider the move.
The Federal Government had also initiated other palliative measures, including the distribution of food items and fertilizers by state governments, and a six-month cash award policy for public servants. Additionally, states were encouraged to focus on energy transition plans in the transport sector.
Governor Uba Sani called for a focus on financial inclusion for the vulnerable population and urged development partners like the World Bank to invest more in bringing people into the financial services system. He emphasized that without proper financial inclusion, cash transfers may end up reaching the wrong people and not effectively address the intended objectives.
As the debate over the cash transfer policy continues, the Nigerian government is under pressure to find sustainable solutions to the challenges posed by the fuel subsidy removal and its impact on the most vulnerable in society.