Osinbajo come hard on critics of tradermoni scheme



The federal government Friday blasted critics of its tradermoni scheme, saying not only are allegations of its politicisation unfounded but such criticism only reflect the mind set of those who proffer them.

The FG noted that the scheme was duly approved by the National Assembly since 2015 but that federal lawmakers also delayed its implementation till now.
Speaking in Ilorin, Kwara state when he came to formally launch the scheme, Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo who spoke as guest on a local radio station blamed the criticism of the project on anger by the elites whom he argued were angry that the poor was now having access to funding that could better their lot.
However the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state which had earlier raised the alarm that only APC members were being considered for the program and that it was a purely political gimmick, followed up early in the day with repeated radio announcements rejecting the scheme in the state.
The PDP went ahead to organize its own version of the scheme at the Mandate Office, headqaurters of its gubernatorial campaign for Alhaji Razaq Atunwa. 500 members benefited from the program.
Chairperson of Market Women Association in the state, Alhaja Adenike AbdulKareem Lambe, confirmed the rejection of the tradermoni by members of the association.
She said”we doubt the intention of the federal government on the disbursement of such funds at this period of electioneering campaigns towards the 2019 general elections.
“If they truly want to assist the market women, they should come back after next year’s general elections to disburse the funds to our members.
“We can’t be deceived by the APC government that has not done anything for us in the past three years. Where were the APC led federal government when fire razed our market and consumed goods worth millions of naira?
But in the interview monitored by our reporter, the Vice President who spoke both in English and Yoruba, said every criticism of the programme was mere politics and asked Nigerians to disregard such.
He said: “I don’t understand what they mean by politicisation. First this is a programme duly approved by the National Assembly . We started it in 2015 under different name. Majority of the National Assembly members approved it. Our elites sometimes criticise what will help the poor. Did you hear any criticism when the federal government gave assistance to banks that were having problems around 2010? That time the federal government spent more than N3 trillion helping the banks.”
Asked about the timing of the programme, Osinbajo said no time is wrong to do a good thing. “No time is wrong to start doing the right thing. We started about 18 months ago. It was delayed by the national assembly. I don’t think we need to take the criticism seriously. The critics are just upset that some poor people are getting help.
“Its a big lie; that is politics”, he said when reminded that leaders of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had alleged that beneficiaries of the scheme in Kwara state were members of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC).
He added that “In politics when you hear some of the things people say you will find it difficult to believe. Go and ask the beneficiaries, no one asked them about their political party before they took down their names.
“I have been to Cross River which is a PDP state,we have been to Enugu, we have been to Anambra which is APGA. President Buhari will never accept to politicise such a programme that is executed with money belonging to Nigerians.
“Those who are criticising the programme maybe that is their own mindset, so please tell them anytime they say we are doing politics with it that they are saying what they would have done if they were in our position”.
 He revealed plans by the federal government to establish a Peoples Money Bank to continue with the scheme saying once that is done there wont be need for him to be going around like this because the bank will be taking care of that.

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