President Muhammadu Buhari has given Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo, the go-ahead with the plan to recruit 774, 000 under the Extended Special Public Works programme (SPW), Daily Trust reports.
The State Minister of Labour and Employment, Keyamo, confirmed the development to Daily Trust in a telephone interview on Tuesday in Abuja.
He said he has the fresh instruction of Mr President to proceed with the recruitment exercise.
Keyamo said: “I have fresh instructions to proceed with the program as directed by him and to continue to supervise the program in accordance with law.
“I stress it, in accordance with law.”
He told our reporter that the directive was given to him by President Buhari on Tuesday, 14 July 2020.
The minister and lawmakers had been at loggerheads over the implementation of the programme.
The lawmakers had faulted the minister for not seeking their input before putting together members of the 20-man states selection committees who were inaugurated in June this year.
After engaging in a shouting match with members of the National Assembly joint committee, Senate President, Ahmed Lawan, called for the suspension of the programme.
However, Keyamo told our reporter that the state’s selection committees are proceeding already with the programme as planned, following the new directive from Buhari.
He said: “I have instructions from Mr. President to proceed.
“The state’s selection committees are proceeding already with the programme.
“Nothing stopped them before.”
The Special Public Works programme
The Special Public Works Programme is designed to employ 1,000 persons from each of the 774 local government areas of the country.
The programme is expected to gulp N52billion meant for the payment of the participants at N20,000 per month for three months.
The 20-man selection committee for the programme is being chaired by the Director-General of the National Directorate of Employment (NDE), Nasir Ladan Argungu, and supervised by Kayamo.
I am not aware – NDE DG
Meanwhile, the Director-General of the National Directorate of Employment (NDE), Dr Mohammed Nasir Ladan Argungu, who is also the chairman of the selection committee of the Extended Special Public Works program, told Daily Trust that he is not aware of the directive by President Muhammadu Buhari for the 774,000 job recruitment exercise to proceed.
Speaking to Daily Trust on Tuesday in a phone interview, he said: ”I am not in the position to say anything about it.”
Asked whether he is aware of the directives of Mr President, he said: ”I have not heard of it and I don’t know anything about it.”