By Achadu Gabriel, Kaduna
In fulfilment of campaign promises, Kaduna North local Government Council led by Hon. Mukhtar Baloni as Chairman on Tuesday distributed empowerment items worth millions of naira to 61 beneficiaries mostly women from various wards across the council area.
The 61 items distributed to the beneficiaries around 3pm include 10 Industrial sewing machines,15 manual sewing machines, 26 grinding machines and 10 Generating sets respectively.
Although some of the beneficiaries interviewed by our correspondent said they were not informed about the empowerment or trained until almost the day of the distribution when they got SMS on their cell phones to come and collect the items.
A beneficiary bearing Haj. Amina S. Namadi said she had of the programme just that day in a message through her phone.
Haj. Namadi also said that she will not use the sewing machine except her daughter who accompany her to the distribution venue that showed interest.
“We don’t know about the empowerment. We are beneficiary of the programme. We came to collect it today. They are helping people not to sit down like doing nothing at home.
“We thank God for it but me, I’m not going to use it. I’ll give it to my children because they are ready to learn and she like it. I’ll not sell it. Is something that can’t spoil quickly.
“It can be use for years. With it you can even build house, car, feeding.
One of my daughters is very much interested.”, she said.
On how did she got to know about the programme and got the item, she said, “We know the LG chairman Hon. Mukhtar Baloni. We worked together, and when he was running for the chairman, we were all there.
“They didn’t collect anything from us like money. We just saw a text and they called us to come”, she said.
Also speaking in an interview, another beneficiary bearing Haj. Sa’adatu Lawal from Shaba ward said she was just called and given manual sewing machine as an assistance to help herself with it.
“I’m from Kaduna north LG. just a neighbor from the LG council. The chairman Hon. Mukhtar Baloni just called to give us as an assistance to help our self with manual sewing machine”,she said.
Haj. Lawal also said she did not asked for it, saying” No i don’t know about it. They just called me yesterday to come and collect today. I got the message through my phone through my Ante.
“I’m from Shaba ward. I’m going to sew with it. I don’t know the exact number of us ask to come, but we are much”, she stated.
In an interview at the temporary LG secretariat, the council secretary, Hon. Mustapha Abubakar S. who supervised the distribution said several promises that touched lives including education policies were made during their campaign before the emergence of the Council chairman nick named as “Reliable and Defendable”.
“We’ve elected reliable and defendable as chairman. During our campaign before he emerged as winner, we promised so many things that will touch the lives of our voters such as empowerments, education Policies and so on.
“So we have been doing this kinds of things for the past seven to eight months. We have empowered more that 1000 women with up to N10,000. We also paid scholarship to students more than a thousand. Now this gesture we are doing now we are empowering men and women with industrial sewing machines, manual, grinding machines, generator sets, totaling 61, in other to make their lives easier and to have something to depend on, not to depend on someone else.
“And that is what we have been doing. And that is what we will continue in next 2 and some months left in our tenure.
On criteria used in the selection of the beneficiaries, he said “We selected them from 12 various wards, with selection team with high integrity, and so sure that. they’ll not sell them.
Although the council secretary promised to disclosed the amount expended on the empowerment projects through SMS but never did until press time despite several reminder.
The beneficiary however thanked the council chairman and other members for the gesture and prayed that more and more of the gesture and given especially to those who have not gotten.
Findings revealed that the gesture of the council is targeted at 2023 elections to galvanize supporters for their party, the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) in the LG and the state.