By Levinus Nwabughiogu-Abuja
Civil Rights Advocacy Centre has said that the establishment of National Youth Service Corps, NYSC Trust would be a waste of resources, stressing the fund will be diverted to private pockets of individuals.
The Centre, therefore, urged President Muhammadu Buhari to decline assent to the Bill seeking to establish the Trust Fund.
It will be recalled that both the Senate and the House of Representatives had successfully passed the bill which is now waiting for presidential assent.
In a letter written by the President of the Centre, Adamu Edward and addressed to President Buhari through the Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed, the Rights Advocacy informed that its investigation revealed that the fund will only serve the interest of some few individuals.
“The NYSC-Trust Fund is one of such ventures that are ill-timed and intended to duplicate the efforts of the government to encourage waste and diversion of funds to private pockets by all ramifications. This is on the heels that the core provision of the fund is to address the challenges confronting the NYSC scheme, including infrastructural deficit across the orientation camps,” the letter partly reads.
“Dear President, you might want to agree that the NYSC Trust Fund and its provisions are not in tune with the realities in the country. From our analysis, it would end up as a slush fund for some vested interests bent on cornering the commonwealth of the people.
“You may also wish to recollect that since you assumed office, it has not been business for those whose stock in trade is to siphon government funds, which hasn’t gone down well with those individuals and groups.
“According to credible information at our disposal, the NYSC Trust Fund is solely intended to serve the purpose of some select individuals against what is being pushed forward in the public space. They plan to milk the country dry through the NYSC Trust Fund in furtherance of their insatiable quest to siphon public funds by all means necessary.
“Dear President, consequently, as concerned stakeholders in the country, we have extensively weighed the pros and cons of the NYSC Trust Fund. We have come to the patriotic conclusion that it is not in the country’s best interest at large, and as such, it should not be signed into law.
“The harm posed by the signing into law of the NYSC Trust Fund is innumerable and counterproductive at this critical point of our existence as a country. The country cannot afford to encourage such an enterprise that would ultimately serve as a conduit pipe for the embezzlement of scarce government resources.
“The Federal Ministry of Sports and Youth Development, under whose jurisdiction the NYSC falls, is alive to its mandate of ensuring youth development in the country. This is aside from the other youth intervention initiatives introduced to cater for the ever-growing needs of the youthful population in Nigeria.
“Dear President, as you may be aware, your administration has given adequate attention to the country’s youth empowerment and development initiatives. If not for selfish reasons, the promoters of the NYSC Trust Fund do not mean well to the country”, the CSO wrote.