President Muhammadu Buhari and his cabinet dedicated a better part of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting on Wednesday to deliberate on the rising poverty level in the country, and how to remedy the situation.
They rose from the meeting with a resolution to approve a new policy framework to tackle the menace, under the National Poverty Reduction with Growth Strategy
Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, gave State House correspondents hint into what transpired at the meeting presided over by President Buhari.
According to him, the Federal Government was not unaware of the poverty level but was doing something about it.
He said it was in that line that FEC approved the National Poverty Reduction with Growth Strategy (NPRGS).
Adesina said Vice President Yemi Osinbajo is to chair the Steering Committee of the new policy to provide overall guidance for implementation.
He said council also approved the strategy’s incorporation into the medium term national development plan 2021-2025 and agenda 2050 and directed the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, to prepare a bill for submission to the National Assembly to make the implementation of the strategy sustainable.
Adesina said: “The Federal Executive Council meeting got concluded, some few minutes back. We have here to brief us on some of the conclusions the ministers for Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources and the Minister of Foreign Affairs.
“Before we hear from them let me just apprise us with a conclusion on draft policy on National Poverty Reduction with Growth Strategy that was also approved by the Federal Executive Council.
“The Presidential Economic Advisory Council had some weeks back submitted the National Poverty Reduction with Growth Strategy to the Federal Executive Council, and it was widely debated today, and eventually passed as a conclusion.
“And these are some of the things. The Federal Executive Council noted the worsening poverty situation in the country and the efforts of the Federal Government to redress that situation.
“It’s not as if government is not aware that there is poverty in the land but things are been done.
“One of it is this National Poverty Reduction with Growth Strategy that was presented today.
“The Council also noted that the president applied to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in 10 years. Actually, by June 12, this year, that promise will be two years old. It was noted that it is work in progress, and it is work that will get done.
“The council noted that the president has directed the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, and the chairman Presidential Economic Advisory Council on the need to come up with a sustainable Poverty Reduction Strategy. And that strategy is what is already codified in this volume and it was widely discussed and passed.
“The council noted the contributions of stakeholders, comments and observations made by FEC members on this volume and the presentation of the NPRGS has been duly incorporated into the strategy.
“They also noted the final articulation of a two volume, National Poverty Reduction with Growth Strategy, and its major pillars.
“The strategy are encapsulated in these two volumes, which you may need to get familiar with the contents of the strategy.
“A national steering committee, chaired by the vice president is to provide overall guidance for the implementation of this strategy in these two volumes.
“The council approved the implementation of the National Poverty Reduction with Growth Strategy. It approved the incorporation of the strategy into the medium term national development plan 2021 to 2025 and agenda 2050 and directed the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice to prepare a bill for submission to the National Assembly to make the implementation of the National Poverty Reduction with Growth Strategy sustainable.