The Federal Government says it will not hesitate to suspend N-Power volunteers who abscond from their Primary Place of Assignment (PPA).
Justice Bibiye, the Communications Manager of the National Social Investment Programme (NSIP), in a statement on Wednesday 18th December, 2019, said this is a reaction to “a recent report that highlighted the recurrent problem of beneficiaries of not reporting to their Place of Primary Assignment (PPA) in the states where they were posted.”
Mr. Bibiye also said the information shows how some beneficiaries stayed away for long periods of time from their Place of Primary assignment.
Note that in month of July, 2019, a special report on how some N-Power beneficiaries absconded from duty and abuse their opportunities in three selected states: Kano, Katsina, and Adamawa, which prompted the agency to sack 2,525 beneficiaries for absconding from their PPAs.
The agency also states that about eighteen thousand six hundred and seventy four (18,674) other beneficiaries of the initiative “have voluntarily resigned, having secured permanent employment.”
The agency had taken concrete steps to address the problems, which border mainly on absenteeism and truancy on the part of some N-teach beneficiaries who have constantly abused the privilege of being engaged to serve their land.
Bibiye noted that volunteers who were assigned to schools by the various state governments in collaboration with the Federal Government are now being monitored by the school heads.
He added that monthly reports are expected to be made to the State Government-Appointed Focal persons “who will then forward the report directly to the central N-Power office.”
Although several complaints and observations have been made which has resulted in the expulsion of affected erring beneficiaries from the programme as stated earlier, we, however, note attempts of some to connive with school Principals who directly interact with these beneficiaries, thus providing unreliable data, further reiterating the deep-rooted corruption in the system.
This irregularity is being checked as we have since partnered with several security agencies which includes; ICPC, DSS and EFCC to monitor, apprehend and prosecute those seen to be undermining the National Social Investment Programmes (NSIP) of the Federal Government.
We assure everyone that any erring N-Power volunteer would be suspended immediately and the beneficiary’s payment will be placed on-hold whilst we conduct investigations. This would serve as a deterrent for the future as we have always done with any reports of truancy and indiscipline as it was also mentioned in the Businessday investigative report,” the official added.
The N-Power was introduced in the year 2016 with the aim of reducing unemployment amongst Nigerian graduates and non-graduates between the ages of 18 and 35.
The volunteers are paid Thirty thousand Naira (N30,000) monthly as stipends and given tablet computers to aid further learning.
One of the many hurdles characterizing the N-Power programme has remained the issue of beneficiaries absconding from duty at their various Place of Primary Assignment.