Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo says the federal government created and saved over two million jobs through its economic sustainability plan (ESP). Osinbajo said this during a virtual meeting with the economic sustainability committee on Monday.
The ESP was established on June 24, 2020 to offer COVID-19 stimulus packages to various sectors of the economy as well as poor and vulnerable groups, small and medium enterprises (SMEs). It was developed as a means to cushion the effects of the COVID-19 lockdown on the economy.
“Thanks to the Federal Government’s COVID-19 stimulus package, the Nigerian economy did not degenerate as feared and at least over 2 million jobs have been both created and saved with the implementation of the Economic Sustainability Plan.
“Although the target of N2.3 trillion estimated to be spent under the plan has not been achieved just as yet, the Federal Government appropriation part of that total being N500 billion has been completely released by the end of May, making it possible to attain several objectives of the ESP directly supporting a few million Nigerians.
“While a total of 2,100,021 jobs have been saved and created all together, the breakdown of the figures indicate that 1.3 million jobs have been retained through interventions in the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) space, including the Payroll Support.
“The 774,000 jobs from the Public Works Programme and 26,021 Jobs from construction/rehabilitation projects across the country were among those freshly created.
“I know that if we were able to infuse N2.3 trillion into the Nigerian economy, we will not have the employment figures that we have today, we will not have the problems that we have today, they will be significantly reduced.
“We hope that in the next couple of weeks, we will be able to get some good response on more funds that we expect to get from the CBN which will help us to make some progress on the implementation.”