Nigeria: Abacha Loot - Labour Leader Backs Cash Transfer to Poor Nigerians

Photo: Vanguard
Abacha's loot.

A labour leader has expressed his support for the federal government's decision to pay the $322 million Abacha loot as cash transfer to poor homes, through Conditional Cash Transfers (CCT).

Issa Aremu, an executive member of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and General Secretary of National Union of Textile Garment and Tailoring Workers of Nigeria (NUTGTWN), in Kaduna frowned at the recent call by the National Assembly for the executive arm of government to pay the repatriated monies into the Consolidated Revenue Account and be distributed to the federating units in line with the current revenue sharing formula.

While addressing a workshop on the "Provision and Spread of Socio-Economic and Infrastructural Facilities" organised by the Federal Character Commission (FCC), Mr Aremu said legislators wrongly compared "like with unlike" adding that the recovered Abacha loot from Switzerland was negotiated to be used for budgeted World Bank assisted Social Investment Programme (SIP) through cash transfer to the poor.

The labour leader observed that it was wise that the federal government give poorest Nigerians the cash transfer as a matter of right rather than what he called "undignified handouts" by some corrupt politicians.

Mr Aremu urged the National Assembly to partner with the Executive through the Federal Character Commission to ensure the cash transfer was not limited to the poor households in 19 states alone but must be spread to all the 36 States of the Federation and the Federal Character Territory in line with the Federal Character principle.

While hailing all the participants and stakeholders that worked to ensure the return of Abacha loot, Mr Aremu called on the National Assembly members to pass the Proceed of Crime Bill before the next general elections in 2019.

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