Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq has forwarded a bill to the state House of Assembly seeking to have his various initiatives to drive economic growth, counter poverty, and ensure equitable distribution of resources in the state institutionalized. When passed into law, the bill will result in the establishment of the Kwara State Social Investment Programme (KWSSIP) which would be charged with the responsibility of tackling poverty, ensuring equitable distribution of resources and economic growth. ‘Mr. Governor’s plan is to ensure that the steps taken towards tackling poverty and making living a lot more meaningful for our people are formalized and institutionalized. It is a social security plan that benefits everyone, regardless of affiliation’, chief press secretary to the Governor, Rafiu Ajakaye said in a statement on Thursday.
He added that such programmes will outlive the administration and prevent having people, especially the aged from falling into destitution or depending on any individual politician to access whatever support the state can offer them. Modeled after the Federal Government’s Social Investment Programmes, the KWSSIP will comprise of the Kwara State Conditional Cash Transfer (KWCCIT) to support those within the lowest poverty bracket by improving nutrition and increasing household consumption; Kwara State Poverty Reduction Programme (KWSPRP) to assist Kwarans to acquire and develop lifelong skills; Kwara State Government Entrepreneur and Empowerment Programme (KWSGEEP) which shall lend money to petty traders, artisans, farmers, enterprising youths, men and women; and HomeGrown School Feeding Programme (HGSF).
‘The HGSF will ensure school feeding of schoolchildren in order to increase school enrolment, reduce malnutrition, empower community women and support small farmers in the state’, Ajakaye said.