The news of the N500 billion palliative proposed by President Bola Tinubu to cushion the effects of the petrol subsidy removal, broke and it has continued to generate mixed reactions. On Wednesday, the President wrote to the House of Representatives seeking approval for N500bn to cushion the effects of petrol subsidy removal. In a swift response, the House on Thursday approved the request, calling for proper utilisation of the funds for the purpose it was meant for.
The President announced petrol subsidy removal during his inaugural address on May 29, 2023, in response to claims that the subsidy regime favoured the rich more than the average Nigerians, among other reasons.
These are titbits on how to benefit from the palliatives:
1. You must be on the ‘national social register’ – The former Minister of Finance, Budget, and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed in the last administration had explained that there is a social register which will be used for the electronic transfers of the funds.
The palliative will be provided to the ‘most vulnerable members’ who have been identified, registered and contained in a national social register which had been developed by the Ministry of humanitarian affairs, disaster management, and social development.
The National Social register as of the end of January 2022 has captured over 46 million Nigerians.
2. Although the modality to be adopted by the Federal Government in the implementation of the new programme is yet to be fully outlined, these cash transfers are for poor and vulnerable people in both rural and urban areas in Nigeria.
3. Vulnerability is the degree to which a population, individual, or organisation is unable to anticipate, cope with, resist, and recover from the impacts of disasters. It is determined through evidence-based assessments and will be consistent with the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
This determination is in line with the Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) adopted by Nigeria, which identifies multiple deprivations at the household and individual level in health, education, and standard of living, used by the country to assess vulnerable populations.
4. Children, adolescent girls, women, the elderly, unemployed, malnourished people, and those who are ill or with pre-existing health conditions or disabilities are particularly vulnerable.