The beneficiaries selected from the 774 local government areas received a direct payment to their bank accounts via their Bank Verification Number.

This information was disclosed in a document exclusively obtained from the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment by our correspondent on Wednesday.

The scheme domiciled under the Ministry of Trade and Investment commenced on March 9, 2024, with financial grants of N50,000 without repayment obligations to eligible small business owners operating in various sectors such as trading, food services, ICT, transportation, creatives, and artisans in the 774 local government areas of the country.

It targeted 70 per cent of women and youths, 10 per cent of people with disabilities, and 5 per cent of senior citizens, with the remaining 15 per cent distributed to other demographics.

It also said only one million out of the 3.6 million applicants for the conditional grant will be selected as recipients.

President Bola Tinubu, on October 17, 2023, launched the renewed hope conditional cash transfer to 15 million households.

The scheme was only to benefit people with nano businesses seeking to expand and be willing to formally register their businesses and hire at least one additional person as their turnover increases.

The ministry, in a Frequently Asked Questions and Answers said “Disbursements aren’t based on any specific criteria, but in the order, applications are verified. The goal is to reach an estimated 1,290 beneficiaries per LGA across the country, totalling one million.

SEE ALSO:  Guest dies during Lagos birthday celebration, host held

“Disbursement is also subject to verification of NIN, which became mandatory after the initial application phase and required only BVN. The selection is random, without human intervention, from those who have passed their NIN and BVN verification.”

Advertisement

The trade minister, Doris Aniete, also stated that the objective is to distribute funds to an estimated 1,290 beneficiaries per local government area across the country.

However, a list containing the number of recipients showed that individuals in all LGAs received the funds but not in equal numbers.

The list didn’t contain personal details and contacts of individuals who benefitted from the programme and is as of May 29, 2024.

A breakdown of the document showed that Katsina LGA in Katsina State got the highest allocation with 1,048 beneficiaries while Omuma LGA got the lowest with 85 recipients.

A summary of the top ten receiving LGAs includes Gusau LGA in Zamfara State (977), Omala in Kogi State with 921 recipients, Shiroro LGA in Niger State (911), Owerri North in Imo State (897), Konshisha LGA in Benue State (890), Calabar South in Cross Rivers State (881), Anka LGA in Zamfara State (876), Balanga LGA in Gombe State (873) and Kaltungo LGA in Gombe State (862).

While the lowest 10 receiving LGAs include Olorunsogo LGA in Oyo State (85), Etsako Central in Edo State (86), Ogu/Bolo in Rivers State (98), Opobo/Nkoro in Rivers State (103), Owen West in Edo State (104), Ovia South-West in Edo State (110), Jere in Borno State with 116 recipients, Degema in Rivers State (146), Ogun Waterside in Ogun State (159), Ogo Oluwa in Oyo state (160).

SEE ALSO:  Church overseer allegedly evicts estranged wife, six children

Recall that the minister had earlier indicated that disbursement was going to be staggered and in phase till completion.

Meanwhile, the trade minister confirmed that the ministry had begun examination and sorting of applications received from asset managers to establish the diaspora fund.

Advertisement

She said hundreds of applications were received and currently undergoing a vetting process.

The minister, speaking through her aide, Terfa Gyado, said, “On diaspora Fund, the deadline for Expressions of Interest has closed and applications are currently being vetted.

“We received applications in hundreds and from all over the world.” (PUNCH)