By Naomi Sharang, Abuja.
A bill to establish National Poverty Alleviation Management Commission on Tuesday passed the second reading at the Senate.
This was sequel to the presentation of the lead debate on the bill by its sponsor, Sen. Kabir Barkiya (APC-Katsina) during plenary.
The bill is entitled “A Bill for an Act to establish National Poverty Alleviation Management Commission”.
Leading the debate on the general principles of the bill, Barkiya said that it was first read on Jan.19.
He said that the bill, when passed, would have tremendous impact on the reduction of poverty level in Nigeria.
“The passage of the bill will effectively and efficiently regulate all forms of funds provided to alleviate poverty in the land, especially to remedy the suffering of our citizens,” he said.
Barkiya said that the bill would effectively reduce youth restiveness emanating from poverty and unemployment, by making available funds available for productive use through a transparent manner, in order to achieve the core objectives.
Seconding the debate, Sen. Adamu Aliero (PDP-Kebbi) said that the poverty level in Nigeria had reached an alarming proportion, to the extent that in some states, over 80 per cent of the population now lived in abject poverty.
“Billions of naira have been budgeted annually for poverty alleviation but it doesn’t reach the target population,” he said.
Aliero said that there was need to coordinate all funds meant for poverty alleviation, so as to ensure they got to the targeted population.
The Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, thereafter, referred the bill to the Senate Committee on Poverty Alleviation for further legislative work and report back within four weeks.