Paul Osuyi, Asaba
Vice Presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Peter Obi on Thursday described the TraderMoni social welfare scheme of the Federal government as a complete waste of time and resources.
Obi said the Federal government was just dishing out N10,000.00 each to unknown persons who can not be traced or monitored in terms of how they have progressed in their business ventures.
The former governor of Anambra State spoke in Asaba, Delta State where he was a guest at the product exhibition for over 4,000 beneficiaries of the job-creation scheme of the Governor Ifeanyi Okowa-led administration.
“What Governor Okowa is doing through the job creation office is training people and giving them the funding to start their own business when you compare that with the TraderMoni. I don’t want to compare them; how can you give people N10,000 without training; who do we even know that they are giving the money? How would they collect the money? Here we train them and support them with funding. The Federal government should come to Delta State and learn,” Obi said.
He likened the Delta State model to that of Tony Elumelu Foundation, noting that the best way to ensure an enduring empowerment scheme is to identify, train, empower and consistently monitor the progress of beneficiaries.
Okowa in his remark while flagging-off the exhibition, said the job-creation scheme of his administration is “a resounding success,” pointing out that many youths have now embraced entrepreneurship as a means to realise their dreams of a prosperous future.
According to the governor, the annual economic growth rate of the services sector in the state which was 8.9% as at 2015 improved by 13.2% in 2017, adding that there was also a corresponding improvement in the agricultural sector by 13.3% in 2017 from 8.6% in 2015 as a result of the empowerment schemes of his administration.
He disclosed that the scheme received funding assistance from the World Bank/European Union State Employment and Expenditure for Results (SEEFOR) during the 2017/2018 cycle, adding that the Tony Elumelu Foundation had also established a N500 million endowment fund in support of the scheme.
Chief Job Creation Officer in the state, Prof. Eric Eboh, described the exhibition as a milestone in the administration’s efforts to tackle youth unemployment, diversify the economy and ensure inclusive growth in the state.
He said the footprints of the job-creation scheme of Skills Training and Entrepreneurship Programme (STEP) and Youth Agricultural Entrepreneurs Programme (YAGEP), were visible across the 25 local government areas of the state.