He recently revealed this in Abuja while speaking virtually during a United Nations High-Level Forum on Jobs and Social Protection.
According to him, Nigeria’s response to the fallouts of COVID-19 was guided by the conviction that social protection schemes are crucial, and can break the cycle of poverty, give real access to jobs and economic opportunities, and improve human capacity and productivity.
Osinbajo added that the Economic Sustainability Plan which was the government’s response is aimed at restoring growth by mitigating the macro-economic shocks, tackling the health challenge, averting business closures, protecting and creating jobs, protecting the poor and vulnerable while repositioning the economy for future resilience.
His words, “The ESP also had a Survival Fund which gave payroll support to small businesses in manufacturing and services as well as to artisans and transporters. As a result of our interventions, we have been able to provide finance and off-take opportunities for millions of farmers.”
“We have also been able to save up to one million jobs and prevented the close-down of at least 150,000 small businesses. We are also able to extend support to vulnerable groups by deepening our existing social intervention programmes and the development of a Rapid Response Register for cash transfers to the urban poor.”
“It is clear that climate change and environmental damage will harm the prospect of creating jobs in many countries of the world including ours. Yet we know that access to energy is vital for generating the fast growth required to create jobs and to provide the resources for social protection.”
“For a gas-rich country like Nigeria, we have to deploy gas not only for electricity but also to reduce the carbon emissions that result from the use of firewood and coal for cooking.”
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