1755 persons already enrolled and deployed under the Labour-Intensive Public Workfare, LIPW programme of the AN-CARES initiative were on Thursday provided with work tools and kits for their duties.
The persons deployed to 175 work sites / communal centres across the communities of Anambra State, are to earn N12,500 each for a period of two years.
The LIPW initiative is a component of the Anambra COVID-19 Recovery and Economic Stimulus (AN-CARES) programme, an intervention at the state level, targeting vulnerable and poor households, agricultural value chains and Micro and Small Enterprises, MSEs, affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The LIPW is implemented in partnership with the World Bank and has its focus on unskilled, unemployed and little educated youths aged between 18 and 45, to engage them in productive social services.
Speaking during the flag off of distribution of the work tools and kits to the LIPW beneficiaries at Amawbia on Thursday, the Anambra Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, Mrs Chiamaka Nnake said the initiative was evolved as a post-COVID intervention programme for vulnerable people, understanding that COVID has impacted a lot of people.
She explained that programme is geared towards ensuring that the category of people find something doing through providing social services.
“We have for different segments- for communities, skilled people, businesses and today, we are supporting the unskilled people.
“So, these are tool kits to enable them undertake the social services.
“The programme required that the communities identify certain people who are unskilled and are able to undertake these jobs.
“So, we are achieving two things with this initiative- providing jobs while achieving a clean and healthy Anambra,” she noted.
Nnake revealed that last week, a four-day Monitoring and Evaluation training for everyone participating in the programme was conducted to acquaint them with what is required from them.
Chudi Mojekwu, the General Manager/ CEO, Anambra State Community and Social Development Agency, the agency driving the programme, said what they did was to support beneficiaries of the Labour-Intensive Public Workfare, LIPW, of Anambra State, with the tools and kits they require to do the work.
“These are people deployed by us to communities and the communities have assigned them to various social services.
“As an agency of government, we believe it is important to support them do their work well. This does not in any way, take away the responsibility the communities owe them too but this is government’s way of saying that we recognize the work given to you, go and do it well,” he explained.
Mojekwu who disclosed that 1755 persons have already been enrolled and deployed under the LIPW programme, said with time, more people will be enrolled.
Noting that the N12,500 payment is for 2 years, the ANSCSDA boss however said that will be subject to the beneficiaries being able to deliver on the tasks assigned.
He said as a way of ensuring effective monitoring and supervision, the government had involved the Anambra State Association of Town Unions, ASATU, to ensure that beneficiaries are on track.
According to him, “These are community-based activities and going by our operation manual, the town union leaderships have a key role to play in terms of site deployment and monitoring and supervision. That’s why they are here.
“You cannot achieve success in this kind of exercise without active involvement of the community leaderships and so far, ASATU has been doing very well.
“We are also listening to their suggestions all in a bid to make sure that the project is well-implemented.”
The ASATU National President, Chief Titus Akpudo described the programme as well thought out, saying it holds great propects for supporting the vulnerable, poor and unemployed youths in the society.
“This project will go along way in alleviating poverty and reducing crime because it will get many unskilled youths gainfully engaged.
“This also enough evidence that the Soludo administration is focused.
“ASATU as the only body that binds all the town unions across Anambra State together will support this programme and the decision to involve ASATU in this initiative will ensure that it realizes its lofty intents,” he said.
On his part, the President General, Achina Town Union, Nze Ezeunara Henry said the plan of government to think of the welfare of the very poor and engagement of the community leaders to monitor the process, will yield the desired result while the State Chairman, Joint Association of Persons Living With Disability, Comrade Ugochukwu Okeke represented by Shedrack Nwafor observed that members of the disability community have been actively involved in the AN-CARES initiative across various levels.
Highpoint was the distribution of the work kits which included two pairs of hand gloves, work wears, two shovels, two rakes, two cutlasses, two brooms, 50 pieces of facemasks and first aid kit.