The group said it has observed some 'contradicting stance' between the Special Adviser to the President on Social Investments, Hajiya Maryam Uwais and Special Assistant to the President on Job Creation, Mr. Afolabi Imoukhuede on the future of beneficiaries after completion of their two-year period in the scheme.
In a statement issued by the National Publicity Secretary of the group, Bolanle Abiodun and received by our teams, the group said the statement credited to Mr. Uwais in a widely circulated report in Vanguard Newspaper of Thursday August 2, 2018 in which Mr. Uwais was quoted as saying that federal government can't task states to absorb N-Power volunteers into their civil service is not only shocking and revealing but also betray the position of Mr. Afolabi Imoukhuede on efforts being made by the federal government for successful disengagement of the volunteers.
"We wish to draw the attention of all 2016 N-Power beneficiaries to the shocking but revealing statement credited to the Special Adviser to the President on Social Investments, Hajiya Maryam Uwais during a recent event in Lagos in which she was reported to have said that the federal government can't task states to employ N-Power beneficiaries into their respective civil service.
We note this statement is both shocking and revealing. "For avoidance of doubt; Vanguard newspaper online report of Thursday August 2, 2018 under the headline "We Can't Task States to Employ You, FG Tells 130,000 N-Power Beneficiaries", Hajiya Maryam Uwais, while addressing participants at a colloquium organised by the Department of Public Law of the University of Lagos, UNILAG in Lagos on Wednesday August 1, 2018 said and I quote:
They have worked for two years and have been paid N30,000 monthly and have a device that gives them information on entrepreneurship. “We cannot ask a state to employ anybody. We have given them N30,000 monthly, the know-how, and practical experience. For example, if you have been working in the farm, you know all there is to know about agriculture by now and should be able to start something. We have many of them who are now forming co-operatives, buying farmlands, growing foods and setting up small businesses.
“It is about taking ownership of their lives; the idea is for you to be able to do things for yourselves. I will like them to look inwards and see what they can do for themselves at the expiration of the programme"."This position of Mrs. Uwais as stated above is inconsistent and even contradicting with the earlier position of Mr. Afolabi Imoukhuede, another top N-Power official during a recent Facebook live on Wednesday June 27, 2018 in which be said that the federal government is making every effort to encourage states to absorb the beneficiaries. He said and I quote:
"There is a persuasive communication going on to encourage the state governments, as much of them that can, to absorb the beneficiaries. And I know some have stated doing it". "He specifically mentioned Gombe, Jigawa, Kaduna as some of the states that are planning to grant permanent appointment to hardworking beneficiaries."Much as we bear no grudge against any official of N-Power and the President Mohammadu Buhari-led APC Federal Government that rescued us from idleness by giving us the opportunity to participate in the scheme, we wish to remind our dearly respected Mummy, Hajiya Maryam Uwais, that considering the current economic situation in the country, it is very difficult, if not impossible that an N30,000 monthly stipend earner, who aside feeding, clothing, and transportation expenses, still attends to some family needs, can save enough money to start his or her own business.
We urge you to ponder on this Ma. "We maintain our earlier position that only absorption of the 2016 N-Power beneficiaries into the federal civil service can consolidate and sustain the successes recorded so far by the N-Power scheme.
It will not only reduce unemployment rate in the country but ultimately provide succor to us, the sons and daughters of ordinary Nigerians who have nobody in high places. "Our agitation remains peaceful and persuasive. We shall Sing praises in the end. God bless President Mohammadu Buhari. God bless N-Power officials. God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.