President Muhammadu Buhari has ruled out the possibility of his government paying N5,000 monthly allowance to unemployed youths in the country as promised by his party, the All Progressives Congress, ahead of the 2015 presidential election.
Buhari’s new position is contrary to the stand of many of his officials who have at different times claimed that the fund to implement the promise had already been provided for in the 2016 Budget currently before the National Assembly.
The President who is currently on a one-week official visit to Saudi Arabia and Qatar however made it clear in Saudi Arabia during an interactive session that he could not be paying those who do not work.
He said he has a “slightly different priority” from the position of his party on the payment of the unemployed which he described as a “largesse.”
The President said rather than paying the unemployed, his administration would build infrastructure and empower able-bodied men to work.
“This largesse: N5,000 for the unemployed, I have got a slightly different priority.
“I would rather do the infrastructure, the school and correct them and empower agriculture, mining so that every able-bodied person can go and get work instead of giving N5,000 to those who don’t work,” Buhari declared.
The APC, which defeated the then ruling Peoples Democratic Party in the March 28 presidential election, had promised during its campaign that if elected to the central government, it would pay N5,000 monthly to 25 million jobless youths as well as introduce a free school feeding programme.