New Allowee: Na Buhari We Know – Corpers

By Akindoyin Aanuoluwapo

In the light of the recent increment in the corps members monthly allowance popularly called allowee, Corps members have showered praises on the federal government under the leadership of President Mohammadu Buhari for putting smiles on their faces as the former allowee of N19,800 made life miserable for them in this hard economy. But the increment has made their standard of living to improve

It has been a rumoured news for a long time that corps members allowance will be increased from N19,800 to N31, 800. The news filtered into the air and filled the pockets of corps members. Each time this news finds its way into the public, corps members will always ask me, “Sir, is it true that they will start paying us N31,800?” In a quick response to their question, I’d ask, “Where is your source of information? Did you get this information from National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) office or from where?” but their answers are always uncertain, in fact, they don’t know the source of that information.

Then I’ll always assure them that the only place they can get the right information about their monthly allowance (popularly known as allowee) is through NYSC office.

When one batch comes in, they dig up the old news of allowee increment and sooner, when they discovered it is fake news, they forget it, until later when the same old news will resurface.

Last December, when the Director-General of the scheme, Brigadier General Shuabu Ibrahim assured corps members that they will receive the new minimum wage as allowance starting this year, 2020, I thought it was a fake news that began circulating again.

The same old same old news that used to circulate was at some points attached with the picture of the DG and they attributed all the things that was said to the DG in a bid to make people visit the site to read the news so as to increase traffic flow on their website.

In fact, I’ve read too much of that news that I never bothered to check the website address, there are new websites that imitate the popular websites, with a little change in their url so as to attract visitors there

The news further said that the DG said the allowance of corps members was being reviewed to reflect the new minimum wage of N30,000 per month by 2020 as it had been captured in the yet-to-be-assented appropriation bill.

The budget was increased by lawmakers from N10.33 trillion presented by President Muhammadu Buhari on October 8 to N10.6 trillion.

In an interview with newsmen, Brigadier General Ibrahim said, “We’ve told our corps members that the allowance was captured in the 2020 Budget, once signed into law by Mr. President, payment will commence.”

“The Hon Minister of Youth and Sports Development reiterated this too when he addressed the Corps members in Lagos.”

Earlier in October, the Minister of Youth and Sports, Sunday Dare, said the federal government was planning for the payment of the minimum wage to youth corps members.

He said the NYSC Director-General would provide details of the new allowance after a briefing from the Ministries of Finance and Youth and Social Development.

Youth corps members are currently being paid about N19,800 monthly as allowance by the federal government.

Following the approval for the payment of N30,000 minimum wage by the federal government on April 18 in year 2019, the government and organized labour recently reached an agreement on the consequential adjustment which had been a debated matter for some months.

Since there has been too much fake news that had polluted the air, the DG’s announcement didn’t really have any impact on the corps members as they await the implementation of the increment, they believe it is not valid yet.

Like play, the DG on 24th January, 2020 announced to corps members that they should not expect N30,000 as their allowance which he had earlier assured serving Corp members of the immediate enjoyment of the most talked about and anticipated minimum wage once it is implemented by the federal government.

Following this, Corp members whose hopes are still alive on the implementation are looking forward to the increased allowance as the increment has been captured in the 2020 budget and assented into law by the president after the National Assembly has passed it.

Corp members who enjoy the current minimum wage as they receive 19,800 as net allowance instead of the normal 18,000 do so because of the increased ten percent which is captured in their allowances.

However, following the implementation of the new minimum wage by the federal government as we anticipate this new year, 2020, Corp members should not expect 30,000 but 33,000 as their monthly allowance.

This is in line with the capturing of the ten percent increase which is hoped to be reflected on the new allowance, hopefully.

He added that the provision had been made for the new allowance in 2020 Budget, saying the payment would commence as soon as funds are released by the appropriate authorities.

At the end of January, some of corps members started hearing news from other states that they’ve started receiving the N33, 000, it was like a dream come true beyond how you dreamt it, because, they were expecting N30,000 or N31,800, but they got beyond that, they got their 10% on the federal government minimum wage of N30,000.

As others from other states waited impatiently to receive this allowance so as to confirm that they’ve really paid, they continued receiving news from other states also, till it reached their state, and all the states paid their serving corps members, their joy knew no bound, just like an expectant woman that has exceeded her Expected Date of Delivery and is long due, but suddenly, she has an ease of birth and she heard the cry of a baby.

All corps members across the federation are enjoying the new monthly allowance, they are rejoicing because they believe it will improve their standard of living wherever they are serving, be it rural or urban.

Since this increment came suddenly, some corps members have also increased their spending habit suddenly because they don’t have a plan for the money yet.

But those that are business wise and those that are thinking of saving have started investing and others have started saving.

But the batch A corps members that will be passing out 5th March, 2020 have expressed their displeasure about not enjoying fully the benefit of the increment as they will only collect the allowance just thrice, some of them who spoke with Citizens’ Advocate plead with the government to pay them arrears, which will help them to go a long way in investing the money into a business or skills that will serve as a means of generating income for them till they get a well paying job, since the government cannot provide a white collar job to every graduate.

In 2011, the Federal Government approved an increment in the monthly allowance of Corps members from N9,775 to N19,800.

The increment was conveyed in a letter from the Presidency to the Office of the Director-General of the NYSC, and sent to all state Coordinators of the NYSC.

Tsiga who spoke to newsmen, Monday, in Abuja said “I am delighted to inform you that The President and Commander-in- Chief, Goodluck Jonathan has graciously approved increment in the Corps members allowances from N9,775.00 to N19,800.00 with effect from March,2011. ”

The payment will take effect from March, 2011″ and the 2010 Batch ‘B’ Corps members that have just passed out from the scheme will therefore be paid in arrears” he said.

“They are serving their fatherland, we are posting them to states outside their state of origin, nobody gives them anything except the allowances and it has been stipulated in the law establishing the NYSC that the Federal, States, Local Government and other stakeholders should periodically review the allowances of the corps members”, he said.

He called on states and local governments to emulate the gesture of the Federal Government and improve on the allowances, accommodation and other welfare of the corps members as according to him,” the future of the country are in their hands”.

In retrospect, when the corps members allowance was increased in 2011, the Batch B corps members that passed out were paid arrears so that they were full beneficiaries of the new increment.

But reverse is the case in 2020 when the reports of increment of the monthly allowance paid to NYSC members from the previous amount of 19,800 to 33,000 went round, the news of increment saw many corps members elated,

Soon, some started claiming that outstanding arrears from the time the minimum wage was passed into law would also be paid to both serving and passed-out corps members.

The office of the Director-General however denied the purported payment of arrears, stating that move is “borne out of utmost concern for the welfare of our patriotic youths” and that the date of commencement is January 2020.

DISCLAIMER

The attention of the Management of the National Youth Service Corps Scheme has been drawn to a false story purported to have emanated from the Director – General of the Scheme, Brigadier General Shuaibu Ibrahim to the effect that Corps Members would receive arrears as a fall out of the recent pay raise given to them by the Federal Government which has been roundly appreciated by Corps Members and Nigerians.

Indeed, the fulfillment of the promise of the increment by the Federal Government is borne out of utmost concern for the welfare of our patriotic youths and commencement date is January 2020 as budgeted in the 2020 fiscal year.

Therefore, Corps Members and members of the public are hereby advised to disregard the so – called purported breaking news from the DG NYSC, Brig Gen Shuaibu Ibrahim announcing the payment of various sums of money as arrears to ex – Corps Members of 2018 batches and serving Corps Members of 2019 batches.

With this disclaimer, there is no hope that arrears will be paid to Batch A corps members who are about to pass out March 5th, 2020, unlike what was witnessed in Jonathan’s era in 2011, where arrears were paid.

All the serving corps members that spoke with Citizens’ Advocate appreciated the Federal government for including them in the national minimum wage and thereby paying them as soon as it was implemented.

But some of the passing out corps member are lamenting and praying that the government pays the arrears, so that those of them that haven’t saved enough during their service year can be able to maximize the payment and invest it to do business or learn a trade, for those that don’t have a trade yet.

Some corps members who spoke with Citizens’ Advocate reporter expressed their joy over the increment by the government of President Muhammadu Buhari and they also pleaded that federal government should pay arrears to those Batch A corps members who will pass out in the next few days.

Edame Bright

Edame Bright

We’re very happy and we thank the federal government for finally increasing the payment of our monthly allowance, this has truly shown that the federal government actually thinks about the welfare of corps members.

It will also help us plan a little and save beyond what we have been planning earlier and what we have been saving when we used to receive N19,800.

Since I was able to save out of N19,800, I’m able to save much more out of N33,000. I’m batch A corps member, after my passing out, I want to invest in the money I’ve saved thus far in boutique business, I want to open a small boutique where I can sell clothes, I sell clothes before now, the money will help me to go a long way in starting my business.

I plead with the federal government to please pay arrears to those of us that are passing out so that we can be able to use that money to invest in ourselves. I really need the arrears, if they pay the arrears, I’ll invest it in my boutique business.

I advise the serving corps members to spend less and remember to save for the rainy day.    ]

 

Brai Priscillia Itsoghena

The increment of the monthly allowance is ok and it is better, more than the former allowance, N19,800. All corps members are happy about the increment, but I’m very happy for the increment because it has helped me to save more

The prices of goods and services are the same in the market, they’ve not increased the prices of things in the market.

When I was collecting N19,800, I was able to save, though not much, but now that the alowee has increased, I’ve been able to save a bit more than I used to save. I intend to invest the money into a business.

The federal government can afford to pay the arrears, they should pay the arrears, when they pay the arrears, we can have the money as a whole to invest it in starting a business.

After service, what if the job is not forth coming, we have different lucks, with the arrears, one can use it to start a small business, like clothing or any other business that my savings alone can start or if they pay the arrears, the business that my savings plus the arrears can start.

The serving corps members should learn to save more while they are serving their fatherland, they can also use the money to do business and it will yield profit for them while they are still serving.

Ogechukwu Francis

Ogechukwu Francis

We the corps members love the increment of our monthly allowance, but they could have implemented this earlier so that we the batch A’s that are passing out can enjoy the money to the fullest. It is during our tenure that they started debating about it, but we didn’t see the money till 2 months to the end of our service year.

We heard that they said they will pay arrears to those of us that are passing out, our prayer is that it comes true. Since all the federal government workers are being paid arrears of their salaries after the minimum wage was implemented, even sweepers receive arrears, so, we hope they pay the arrears.

The truth is that the money looks huge at the mention of the N33,000, but when you touch the money, there’s nothing inside it because as they increase the money, everything has increased, including our transportation. To enter bike that is N50, they will charge you N100, claiming that federal government has increased our allowee.

My advice to the serving corps members, no amount is too big and no amount is too small, they should see themselves that they are still receiving N19,800 and save the N13,000 increment. When they save this additional N13,000, they will be able to invest the accumulated N13,000 at the end of their service year.

Amba Peace

Amba Peace

It makes a whole lots of sense to the corps members, we have a whole lots of money in our hands, we can do so many things, we can buy many other things, the more we spend, the more we still need more money, we thank the federal government for what they have done, we are looking forward to receiving our arrears, that is the batch A corps members, so, it’s a good thing they finally implement the minimum wage that we have been expecting for a long time now.

As at now, there has not been increment in the prices of good and services around me, things are still the same in the market.

I advise the serving corps members to utilize their money very well while they are still serving, it is not easy spending all your money before the end of the month and you have to look for another source of getting income.

The increment on my allowee is still there, I’m still saving a little. Though, my capital is not enough yet for my business, but I plan to invest the money on a business, I want to open a boutique shop where I sell women things, that moves market.

Adeyemo Opeyemi

Adeyemo Opeyemi

The increment is a good thing and the right thing expected to be done at this right time by the federal government in the interest of Nigeria graduates, considering the N19,800 formerly given which is very low to the cost of living in this era we find ourselves.

I’m happy about the increment of the monthly allowance to N33,000. My plans is to save up and invest with this savings.

I plan to save about 80% of it and start up a business during this service year, and write professional exams.

To make the batch A’s beneficiaries of the new monthly allowance, the Federal government should pay them arrears of their allowance. Should the batch A’s be paid the arrears of the N33,000, they should invest it wisely in profitable businesses or skills.

Ezika Austin

Ezika Austin

I feel happy, we weren’t expecting N33,000, we were expecting N31,000, it was a thing of joy when we finally heard it was N33,000 and that they were going to pay us, we were very happy. We thank the federal government for making such arrangement.

My advice to serving corps members is that they shouldn’t spend the money as it comes, because they need to have plans, they should save some money so that when they finished service, they can have something to fall back on.

We are praying that they should pay us our arrears, I will help those of us that have passed out to be able to use the money to start something better for ourselves.

Ivom Onyinyechi

Ivom Onyinyechi

We are very excited about the increment to N33,000, I’m happy to be part of things and I’m also happy for the serving corps members.

There has been increment in the price of things around me and other corps members, any little thing that happens, they will tell us that at least we are now receiving N33,000, our NEPA bill even increased in the name of N33,000 allowee.

I’ll like to save the money and at the end of my service year, which is in the next few days, use the money to start up a tangible business that will yield profit.

My advice to the serving corps members to save up their money and use it to start up something, not waiting for any white-collar job.

They should pay us arrears for those of us that are passing out, I believe if they pay us, I’ll be able to add the money to the one I’ve saved to start up my business.

Kadri Rotimi

We are happy that it is happening during our own time, so we are very happy, and it has increased our standard of living a bit.

There’s increment in the allowee from N19,800 to N33,000, I can’t spend it all, I’m saving some though it is little because if not for the increment now you how much it was, so it is not enough to even cater for us for that 1 year, but we have to save something so that you can have something to fall back on at the end of the day.

My advice to incoming corps members is that they should use the opportunity of this increase in our allowee and make something meaningful with that money because as you can see in our country now there is no white-collar job, they should just save something for the future.

Corps members can also invest in skills acquisition and other businesses as they have knowledge in

Kafaru Olawale Yusuf

I am Batch A corps member serving in Ebonyi State. My local government is Ebonyi Local government.

The federal government are really trying concerning the increment of the allowee which we called monthly allowance, it has really helped a lot for we corpers because we think we can really have little saves from it, but along the line, there is high rate in market prices because of the implementation of the new minimum wage.

I think corps members should be paid arrears for those of us that are passing out

I advise corps members should save more out of the allowee and make good use of the increment, since they are not going to be paid arrears because they are still in the system.

 

Mimido Magaji

The increment of allowee is actually a good thing that the government to consider the fact that corpers actually are worth that particular amount of money to be paid and we are happy that they increase that money to N33,000 because N19, 800 is totally nothing to write home about.

I felt happy that they increase the allowee, but not contend because I feel that anyone who is working for the federal government is worth a heavy amount and then N33, 000_ was too loud and people will actually feel that it is a kind of big money that someone is actually earning.

But at first, it was a thing of joys because comparing N19,800 to N33,000, there is a huge difference in the increment.

For my place per se, the first week we got the allowance, when I went to the market, I was shocked at the increment of price of things in the market and barely half of the things I buy at the lower price increased, when I asked why the increment in the price, they said we are copers now, we are rich. The increment didn’t just affect corps members only, but also those that are in that particular environment.

The federal government should pay those that are passing out arrears because those people have worked for the government and if you want appreciate someone, if you are talking about federal government workers a corper is not supposed to be excluded, every corper is a federal government worker and if a sweeper has received arrears, why not? BatchB should receive their own arrears, although I’m not a member of batch A but as if that arrear s is giving to them, they can actually make life out of it.

The truth is that there is no money that is ever enough for anybody and the wisest thing to do is no matter how big or small your money is, learn how to save, no matter how little it is.

It is when you save that you know the kind of investment you want to go in, so if you save, you know your capability and what you actually want to do with your money.

Okoroji Vivian

Okoroji Vivian

We are grateful because finally, the federal government has increased the alloweee of corps members and they are now paying us N33,000, compared to the previous 19,800 they used to pay, at least almost all the corps members can be able to feed well. We are happy.

I plan to save in order to start up something after service with the little money I saved.

My prayer is that, the federal government will pay the arrears for the batch A corps members because it will enable most of us to start something for ourselves without waiting for government to employ us.

There is a little bit increment in price of some items in the market. The only experience I have is that, assuming you want to take bike if you are wearing khaki, they will not charge you the actual amount that they normally charge, they will increase the transportation fare, simple because you are wearing NYSC Khaki, and all because of the N33, 000, they felt that it is a very big amount for a corps member to be earning such amount.

My advice to the serving corps members is that, they should save, now that they have increased the allowee, at least they should maintain the N19, 800 the way we normally manage that N19,800 and save the little ones that is added to make up the N33,000 as the remaining N13,000 should be saved, they can as well eat the N19,800 as it properly instead of them using the money to go to hospital.

Queen Friday Akpan

Queen Friday Akpan

It was indeed a very nice one and it really gave the corps members joy, we’ve been expecting it for a very long time and suddenly it came through, it is very nice and we feel very happy about it.

I’m very concern about that arrears, I want them to pay us our arrears, we can start up little business with it. Most of us that are into business already while we are serving, so with that arrears, it will go a very long way for us.

If the federal government pays arrears, it still doesn’t make any difference whether they pay the arrears or not, already, I’m putting the allowee they are paying me into my business now and if they pay the arrears I will use it to top up my business.

The serving corps members should invest their allowee into business so that it can yield more profit for them.

Uduma Victoria

Uduma Victoria

I am happy about the increment of our allowee from N19,800 to N33,000 and then at least it makes the stressworth

I know that they are going to enjoy their service year more than I did, because I was surviving on N19,800, but they will be surviving on N33,000.

My advice to them is that, since I was able to manage N19,800, inasmuch as I didn’t have more savings, so I would advise them instead of squandering the whole of the N33,000, they should try as much as possible to save, I know money is very tempting and when it is there, your expenditure will increase because the money is there.

So, they should just plan their life in away that they are still receiving N19,800 and let the extra money from that N33,000 be their savings so that by the end of their service they will not be penniless like me.

The federal government should pay the arrears to those of us that are passing out, at least I know what is going to do for me in my life, I’m very sure that there is no job out there waiting for me. So for the meantime, before I’m able to get a job, the money they are going to pay us will be able to sustain me till then, or even invest it in menial businesses that can yield profit for me.

 

Utam Mercy

The increment in the allowee is good in the other way but seriously, here in this state we are suffering it, as corpers the indigenous people are not helping matters. Once they discover you are a corper here, what they are supposed to buy for N50 will be increased to N100.

Like the motorcyclists, they overcharge corps members for transport fares, especially when they know corps members are trooping.

Well I thank the government for doing that for us because it wasn’t easy at all, it was something that we were managing from onset and many of us have problems here and there that we need to sort out with our families, ourselves and others But I’m praising God.

When the increment came, I was the happiest person because I’m business minded so it helped me one way or the other, at least my mode of investing increased so and it is helping me very well. when I used to buy goods of N18,000 or N20,000, I now buy goods of N30,000.

 

Anyanwu Chukwunonso

My opinion on that is that the government tried, the increment at least has enhanced corpers’ standard of living to a certain extent.

When they are paying us N19,800, I’ve been investing part of my allowee, saving the little I can save and any month that I can’t save anything. So that is how, it has been going.

After the increment now, I have investing some certain amount of the money from the one we received last time and the one I use the other part to cater for myself, for feeding and transportation and service another things.

My advice to serving call member is that they should use the allowee very well and also find something that is tangible they will invest on so that when they finish their service year, they will have something to fall back on and not only depending on white collar job for survival.

So, I think they will have to invest, think something creative, invest something on it and come out with a positive result that will enhance their life.

The past administration, Jonathan paid arrears. So, they have to follow that footsteps. Jonathan’s administration paid arrears to serving and passed out corps members when he increased the minimum wage.

Some corps members are still in shock of the sudden development of the increment, now the first month of enjoying the N33, 000 is yet to finish, yet they have squandered the N33,000 because they don’t have a plan for it.

You are beneficiaries of this new allowee, sit down and think on how to utilize this money, how will you make good use of the money? Inasmuch as responsibilities pop up when you earn more money, if you need to spend so much, spend your former allowee, N19,800 and save the remaining N13,000 which you can use to invest in a business or to acquire a skill.

No one is praying that you won’t get a job at the end of your service year, but you need to prepare for eventualities which may arise, should there not be job immediately.

Don’t squander it all, and don’t save it all up just to keep taking it

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