COVID-19: Safety-net to lift 30,000 C/Riverians out of poverty

The Coordinator of the National Social Safety-Net Programme (NSSP) in Cross River state, Mr Chris Anake, has said the programme was targeted at lifting at least 30,000 Cross River people impoverished by the COVID-19 pandemic, out of poverty.

Mr Anake, who said this in Calabar, Wednesday, during a press briefing, noted that, “Due to the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, some self-sustaining low-income households in semi-urban areas have come under hardship due to loss of income. The federal government, in partnership with the World Bank, is targeting semi urban household for some form of support.

“The Rapid Response Register is designed as an intervention under the National Social Safety-Net Programme (NSSP) scale up to target mostly urban poor households and individuals pushed into poverty because of the economic shocks of COVID-19 pandemic,” he stated.

He explained that it was for that reason that the NSSP has come up with the Rapid Response Register (RRR), which he described as a database and FG’s next step response for the programme.

Anake maintained that the NSSP was out to ensure that “targeted communities have accurate information about the RRR and the strategic objective of the register.”

He said 108 enumerators had been trained to carry out the exercise in Cross River to get more persons correctly registered into the Poor and Vulnerable Register for cash payment which he said would last for about one full year.

He reiterated that the aim was to “gradually lift beneficiaries out of poverty,” adding “the cash payment is made available through the Ministry of Humanitarian and Disaster Management where the programme is domiciled.”

The coordinator appealed to stakeholders like the political class, traditional institutions, religious leaders, youth bodies, market women, opinion leaders, NGOs amongst others to give the programme all the support it would need to succeed.

He said: “They should also be aware of the commencement of Community Based Targeting (CBT) of Poor and Vulnerable persons and support our men that are sent to their communities to enumerate the people.”

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