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SURE-P spent N280b in two years – Agwai

By The Citizen
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The Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme (SURE-P) has so far expended about N280 billion out of the N360 billion allocated for its intervention in some social infrastructure in the country, the Chairman, Gen. Martins Luther Agwai (rtd), said Monday.

   Agwai, who led his team to the State House to brief President Goodluck Jonathan on the agency's progress so far, said it also rolled over about N90 billion from the period under review. 

   He noted that since the agency came on board in 2012, it has made several interventions in critical infrastructure in various parts of the country, especially in roads, railway and health sectors.

   Explaining the rollover from last year, Agwai said that when the programme commenced in late 2012, nothing substantial could be achieved, so the management had to roll over N90 billion, 'which we could not utilize because we started late. Besides, in 2013, we had over N88 billion, which we rolled over to 2014.

   According to him, 'Sure-P has achieved a lot in this country. You just have to go out there and see the facts, which are very close to us, including the Abuja-Lokoja Road. We hope that by the end of this year we will know how much we have done. 

   'If you go to the area of maternal health, we have been able to upgrade 500 centres and are working now on another 700. We have sunk over 620 boreholes to give our mothers good health, good pipe born water and are also providing health medications and mama kits for expectant mothers. 

   'From reports on the contributions of SURE-P, Maternal Health Care under SURE-P reduce by almost 60 percent the number of deaths due to child births. 

Now we have over half a million women giving birth under professionally organized midwives, which was not the case in the past.'

   And to ensure accountability and transparency in their work, the National Assembly has always been engaged at every level to inspect the projects, Agwai said, noting that they are open to constructive criticism to enable them perform better.

   Corroborating his account, a member of the board and immediate past Director-General of the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG), Sam Ohuabunwa, said the fund was used to get the East-West Road to where it is, the rail line from Kano to Lagos, and all the works that have been done.