The World Bank finally disbursed about $299.99 million to Nigeria out of the $800 million approved for the National Social Safety Net Program-Scale Up. With about 37.5% of the entire loan disbursed, there is a pending balance of about $442.88 million.
The Federal Government plans to use the said amount in running a monthly cash transfer programme for poor and vulnerable Nigerians who have been hit hard by recent policies, such as the fuel subsidy removal.
The National Social Safety Net Programme-Scale Up was approved by the World Bank on December 16, 2021, and is expected to run till June 30, 2024. The $800 million programme is to be implemented by the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs & Poverty Alleviation.
In October 2023, President Bola Tinubu formally launched the promised conditional cash transfer programme targeted at 15 million households nationwide billed to receive N75,000 within three months. According to a source, the Federal Government is currently seeking the services of a consulting firm to help with the upgrade of the system for the cash transfer programme.
This upgrade is necessary as the National Economic Council (NEC) decided earlier not to use the social register from the previous administration of Muhammadu Buhari for running the conditional cash transfer program due to credibility issues.
The financing agreement document for the National Social Safety Net Program-Scale Up between the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the International Development Association (IDA) of the World Bank showed that the repayment will be made in installments, with the first payment due on January 15, 2027, and the last payment due on July 15, 2051.