President Bola Tinubu has submitted a request to the Nigerian Senate, seeking approval for an additional $800 million loan that was previously requested by his predecessor, Muhammadu Buhari. The purpose of this loan is to expand the coverage of shock-responsive social safety net programs that provide support to all Nigerians, particularly the vulnerable population, assisting them in meeting their basic needs.
Once the loan is approved, 12 million Nigerians will receive a monthly digital transfer of ₦8,000 for a duration of six months, directly deposited into beneficiaries’ accounts and mobile wallets.
Social safety net programs play a vital role in protecting families from the adverse effects of economic shocks, natural disasters, and other crises.
Former President Buhari had previously sent a similar letter to the Senate towards the end of his tenure. However, due to its late arrival, lawmakers were unable to take legislative action on it.
In the new letter addressed to Senate President Godswill Akpabio and read during Thursday’s session, President Tinubu clarified that the Nigerian government aims to transfer the sum of ₦8,000 per month to 12 million poor and low-income households, benefiting approximately 60 million individuals over the course of six months.
The letter states: “Request for approval of additional financing of the national social safety net programme set up by the National Assembly.
“It is with pleasure that I refer the above matter to you. Please note that the Federal Executive Council led by President Muhammadu Buhari approved an additional loan facility to the tune of $800 million to be secured from the World Bank for the National Social Safety Net programme. Copy of FEC’s extract attached.
“You may also wish to note that the purpose of the facility is to expand coverage of shock-responsive safety net support among the poor and vulnerable Nigerians. This will assist them in coping with basic needs.
“You may further wish to note that under the conditional cash transfer window of the programme, the federal government of Nigeria will transfer the sum of N8,000 per month to 12 million poor and low-income households for a period of six months, with a multiplier effect on about 60 million individuals.
“In order to guarantee the credibility of the process, digital transfers will be made directly to beneficiaries’ accounts and mobile wallets.
“It is expected that the programme, will stimulate economic activities in the informal sector, and improve nutrition, health, education, and human capital development of beneficiaries’ households.
“Given the above, I wish to invite the Senate to kindly grant approval for the additional loan facility of $800 million to be secured from World Bank for the National Social Safety Net Programme.
“While hoping that this submission will receive expeditious consideration by the Senate, please accept the assurances of my highest regards,” the letter concluded.