Samson Olukayode Bamidele (PhD)


Most African countries, including Nigeria initiated social safety nets programmes in recent time as part of a broader strategy to ameliorate poverty. Unfortunately, these Programmes have become politicized used as instrument by political leaders striving to win and remain in public offices by any means possible. Hence, this paper examines motives behind safety nets and its genuineness in Nigeria, it shall strive to find out the level of political influence on the implementation of the programmes, and discuss as well  the consequences of shifting the focus of social safety nets from welfare delivery to political patronage. It relied on secondary data that were content analyses, as the study is a descriptive one. The study discovered that social safety nets were established to ameliorate poverty and enhance economic capacity building among vulnerable members of the society but unfortunately it has been overtaken by political leaders for electoral benefits. The study also found that the ‘real’ vulnerable and poor were not captured in the programmes and as ways out of challenge, there is need for more publicity and education by the  government agencies to enlighten general public on the right to access social safety net scheme. Furthermore, it recommended that social safety nets should be restructured to be void of political inclination.


Social safety Nets, Clientelism, Beneficiaries, Politicians, Nigeria.

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