NG-CARES: FG engages firm to verify results achieved by states, FCT

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The Federal Government, on Thursday, engaged Steigler Services Ltd., to serve as an Independent Verification Agent (IVA) for the implementation of the Nigeria COVID-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus (NG-CARES) Programme.

Signing the contract between the Federal Government and Steigler Services, the Minister of State, Budget and National Planning, Prince Clem Agba, expressed optimism that the engagement of IVA for the NG-CARES would provide states and FCT more funds to quickly address the issue of poverty.

Agba stated that the reimbursed funds would no doubt assist in reducing poverty in the country and boost the quest by President Muhammadu Buhari to lift 100 million people out of poverty.

“The NG-CARES is a Performance for Result (PforR) Programme where results achieved by each State and the FCT will have to be verified by Independent Verification Agent before reimbursement is made.

“This will make states and FCT work harder to get more funds and work for their people. The use of IVA in the NG-CARES programme further reiterates President Muhammadu Buhari’s transparency crusade.”

The minister, who called on Nigerians to support the laudable programmes of President Buhari, assured that the Federal Government would continue to focus on the poor and vulnerable in the country.

Speaking on the milestone achieved in respect to the engagement of the IVA, the National Coordinator of NG-CARES, Dr. Abdulkarim Obaje, said that the IVA engagement bidding process was very competitive and included both local and international firms.

Obaje added that Steigler Services Ltd., emerged as the most responsive and competitive bidder.

He explained that the World Bank Procurement guidelines for international competitive bidding was used in the selection of IVA.

Obaje stated that the Federal CARES Support Unit (FCSU) of the NG-CARES Programme has fixed Dec. 28 for the commencement of the first verification exercise that will run concurrently in all the States and FCT.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the firm is expected to verify the results achieved by states and the FCT since the commencement of the programme implementation from June 2020.

The signing of the contract document was undertaken by the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, on behalf of the Federal Government of Nigeria.

The NG-CARES is a US$ 750 million support operations from the World Bank with the objective to expand access to livelihood support and food security services and grants for poor and vulnerable households and firms. (NAN)

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