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SPW participants lament non-payment by FG

Participants in the Federal Government’s Special Public Works programme have complained about the non-payment of their stipends three months after the initiative took off.

Many of them took to Twitter to tackle the Minister of Labour and Employment Festus Keyamo (SAN) for the delay in payment of their N20,000 monthly stipend.

The SPW is an ad hoc programme meant to provide public works for 477,000 artisans from the 477 council areas in the country for three months.

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The programme was inaugurated on January 5 and the first batch of beneficiaries have completed their assignment without being paid.

The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) had on March 20 directed the release of funds to pay the stipends but this directive has not been implemented.

Some of the participants harrassed Keyamo on Twitter, questioning the delays.

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One Dubagari Jnr, tweeted: “What is happening with the SPW? Up till now, we have not been paid and have successfully finished our work. Please Hon. minister we need explanations on why we have not been paid and you have to start the disbursement before fasting (Ramadan).

Another worker, Maikudi Kolo, asked through a tweet: “Una no go pay 774, 000 workers?”

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Abdoul Baqee tweeted: “People are hungry regarding the payment of stipends. Please fast track the payment of these people. 774, 000 people waiting anxiously for their payment with hunger and they don’t even have phone to come to your timeline. When you get hungry just remember those people that work with hunger without their entitlement.”

Yusuf Mohammed Olawuyi asked: “Mr. Honourable minister, what happened to our SPW stipends? You already published that we will start receiving alert from the beginning of April.”

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But the acting Director-General, National Directorate of Employment, Abubakar Fikpo, said, “We are still in the process; we have identified some loopholes here and there. We want to verify the BVN of the participants. That is why we are working with the banks.

“We are verifying the BVN of those participants in order to avoid double payments to several people or to three or more accounts.”

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