Scores of young graduates who were beneficiaries of the N. Power Scheme have protested over alleged disqualification and non-payment of their stipends by the Federal Government.
The protesters who stormed the Secretariat of Nigeria Union of Journalists, Oke-Ilewo, Abeokuta armed with placards with various inscriptions , lamented that they have worked for he federal government, but, yet to be paid since last year December.
The leader of the protesters Mutairu Olalekan , said “there are series of issues facing volunteers in this state, starting from non payment of stipend, unjust disqualification, login issues, missing of selected volunteers’ names from verified list and many more.
But, in a swift reaction, the State Focal Person for the Scheme, who is also Commissioner for Special Duties and Inter-Governmental Affairs ,Barr. Adeleke Adewolu said “no state government has any involvement in the payment of the scheme.
Adewolu who spoke with newsmen while reacting to the protest by the Nigeria power volunteers, said, once the beneficiaries have been deployed to the state, they become Npower volunteer corp members.
He said, the scheme is Federal government idea, adding that the role of the state government is to work with the Npower agencies to make sure people are verified in accordance with the rule of the programme.
According to him, at the end of the verification process we have about 5,000 members that showed up, some did not turn up with the verification process.
“During the verification process, we were only allowed to observe, to ensure that the project is transparent, the Federal government came up with the idea of sending their agencies to conduct the verification exercise.
“In Ogun state, I think about 378 persons were disqualified during the verification process. Some of them were disqualified based on address issue, bank and other issues .
“In Ogun state, we have about 90 per cent members that due to be paid have been paid in February. Over 4900 members verified in Ogun state of which I think over 4500 of them have received the payment of February”, he said .