Concerned Civil Society Groups, gathered in Lagos to take a cursory look at lack of social protection for vulnerable and poor Nigerians.
At a focal group discussion, the civil society and media, brainstormed on those elements that government should give priority attention to fully integrate every segment of the society so as to accelerate national development.
Addressing the forum, Mr. Felix Obanubi executive director Development Animation Program, DAP, said, “I think its all about national social safety net programme, political economy analysis.
We have some state in Nigeria, they started it I don’t know if it’s still functioning but at the age of 65 and above get five thousand naira every month.
He said cash transfer has started from Ekiti state while Lagos State has special peoples law, and its office support people with disability (PWD), but the private sector has its own programme but government is not helping them.
Obanubi said government should engage with private sectors, because some of them have they their different interests and government have to engage them through their Corporate Social Responsibilities, CSR, initiatives.
According to him, the private sector already have there own programmes but government does not know how to engage them and cooperate social responsibility projects are largely targeted at community projects. Some of them are tailored towards road infrastructure while some are interested in health and these are basic development programs that government should lead.
He said, social protection involves lost of cash protection but it is an avenue to enrich the riches again so grassroot involvment is still the end of all these things, adding, “Social protection social protection is about protecting the people. It is a foreign thing and very new to Nigeria but there is need to embrace it”,
He canvassed the need to provide protection for special people, the vulnerable people and that social protection should be all inclusive that is leaving no one behind.
He said the local government is key because elections are held from the ward, while the communitty development association knows the grassroot people and should play critical role in all of these.
Obanubi said though the civil society is key to mobilizing public understanding but local government is the primary factor to make these happen, pointing that even as liberál as Lagos state is there is a huge inequality.