Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, National Leader of All Progressives Congress (APC), has advised the Federal Government to expand the scope of its cash disbursements. He said this in a statement on Wednesday 15 April.
In specific terms Tinubu Adviser the FG to make cash payments to households through Bank Verification Numbers (BVN) “to cushion the effects of COVID-19 pandemic on Nigerians.”
In his words: “The money-less family still needs food, water, shelter and, to a lesser degree, utilities. In a compassionate society, they should not be made to do without.
“Most families need relief. If relief is not forthcoming, these families risk hunger and its attendant suffering and woes,” Tinubu said.
He said the palliative measures “would blunt hunger, maintain aggregate demand in the domestic economy and help sustain private-sector markets to the extent possible.”
He added: “First, we can designate a stipend for every household. The amount should be enough to pay for the monthly needs of an “average” household for food and other basics.
“While this may somewhat penalise larger families, perfection cannot be had at this time.
“Second, the stipends could be given as a form of emergency unemployment insurance to those who can prove they were relieved of employment due to the crisis.
“This will be more targeted at the actual victims of the crisis but harder to administer. This stipend will also have to be extended to owners of small and medium-sized businesses.
“Third, the government can render some form of payroll support to companies and businesses that seek to retain workers albeit they may not be fully employed.
“The stipend can help companies stay in operation while maintaining workers on their payroll. By maintaining workers, the company can more swiftly return to full operation when normalcy returns.”
Tinubu said payment of these stipends would, as PMNEWS reported, require hiring additional government workers to augment the existing bureaucracies to implement that programme.
According to him, this administrative requirement will help boost employment and aggregate consumer demand.
He said that activating Trader-moni and other programmes would help many small-scale traders but not the average wage earner who just lost his job.