Experts urge FG to review palliative grant for traders

Experts have urged the federal government to reconsider increasing the palliative grant for traders due to the escalating inflation rate.

Former Director of the National Association of Small and Medium Enterprises (NASME), Mr. Nerus Ekesie, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Lagos.

Ekesie said that the current allocation of N50,000 for one million traders nationwide was insufficient given the economic challenges.

He suggested that the government could leverage cooperative societies to ensure fair distribution, while also suggesting mentorship programmes to optimise fund utilisation.

“Harnessing the prospects of cooperative society is key to reducing any means of manipulation because it will be disbursed through the various market associations.

“This initiative will enable eligible traders to get the expected funds to enhance their businesses,” Ekesie said.


Similarly, the former President of the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITAN), Mr. Adebayo Adesina, spoke on the adequacy of the N50,000 palliative and advocated for a cooperative model inspired by Chinese practices to empower traders collectively.

“The federal government should adopt the cooperative model, which is a Chinese approach to empowering traders.

“This will help the government get traders into clusters and empower them with adequate funds to grow their businesses.

“This will ensure they work as a group and become accountable to the system, as well as using innovation to resolve their business challenges,” Adesina said.

He also noted the importance of addressing structural obstacles hindering businesses.

A wholesale trader, Mr. Samson Igbafren, expressed worry about the effective implementation of government support, citing past incidents of misallocation.

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He proposed channeling funds through local government areas (LGAs) to reach deserving traders accurately.

Meanwhile, the federal government has introduced the Presidential Conditional Grant Scheme (PCGS) to empower nanobusinesses as part of the Presidential Palliative Program.

This targets specific demographics to stimulate grassroots economic development. [NAN]

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