Osinbajo to critics: It’s absurd to call TraderMoni scheme vote-buying

                           Prof. Yemi Osinbajo.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has defended federal government’s micro credit scheme, TraderMoni, saying that those who describe it as vote buying are absurd.

Speaking during an inspection of TraderMoni real-life monitoring centre in Abuja, the Vice President said the scheme was duly approved by the National Assembly.

Recently, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, described the TraderMoni scheme as vote buying as the federal government was distributing money to traders close to election.

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Speaking during a public hearing organised by the National Assembly Joint Committee on INEC and Political Parties Matters on Vote-buying and Improving the Electoral Processes in Nigeria, Dogara said, “I hope we will have the courage at this event to address the distribution of cash to the public very close to general elections by public officials.”

Reacting on the allegation of vote buying through the micro credit scheme, Osinbanjo said, “Anybody that calls it vote-buying is absurd. It was approved by the Senate and the entire National Assembly.”

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Data sourced from the Bank of Industry (BOI) indicated that N11.5 billion has been disbursed to 1.15 million petty traders as at December 2018 out of the target of N20 billion for 2 million traders in 2018.

Speaking on the vote buying allegation, the Vice President said, “If a programme is approved by the National Assembly and we’re going out and implementing that programme and doing it as vigorously as possible, frankly, I don’t understand where anyone will get that kind of notion from.”

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