In recent years, the Nigerian government in conjunction with her development partners has sought to develop social protection instruments as a mechanism to tackle the high rates of poverty and vulnerability in the country. In 2016, the Federal Government rolled out the National Social Safety-Nets Project (NASSP); aimed at dedicating national resources to improve the lives of its citizens and strengthen the role of social protection in helping to distribute resources evenly.
The World Bank in 2016 announced that up to five million people among the poorest and most vulnerable will get access to social safety nets programs by 2021; through a $500 million International Development Association (IDA) credit approved by the World Bank Group’s Board of Executive Directors. To match this fund, the Nigerian Government also invested $1.3 billion of its own budget to the National Social Safety- Nets project (NASSP). To ensure proper coordination and support to NASSP, the National Social Safety Net Coordinating Office (NASSCO) was established under the Office of the Vice President through the supervision of the Special Adviser to the President on Social Investment Program.
The mandate of NASSCO is to build a database of poor and vulnerable households (PVHHs) in the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). The database under reference is used for planning and decision making nationwide and accessed by development partners for social interventions. To guide coordination of social protection interventions, the Federal Government has put in place National Social Protection Policy. The Policy commits to dedicate national resources to improve the lives of its citizens and strengthen the role of social protection in helping to distribute resources more broadly, contributing to reducing poverty, enhancing human capital, promoting sustainable livelihoods, and protecting households from shocks.
The Lagos state Operations Coordinating Unit (LASOCU) was inaugurated on the 14th of February 2019, with actual field operations commencing in August, 2019. Domiciled in the Ministry of Economic Planning and Budget (MEPB), LASOCU has afforded the State the opportunity to join the league of States that have keyed into the National Social Safety-Nets Project (NASSP). With the support and commitment from the governor, phase 1 implementation was increased from six local government areas to ten local government areas.
The core mandate of LASOCU is to lay a strong foundation for a rigorous and reliable evidence of poor and vulnerable households in Lagos state, by generating a reliable and credible Lagos State Single Social Register (LASSR). LASOCU is charged with the overall coordination, development, and management of the LASSR.
The main objective of the program is to reduce POVERTY and INEQUALITY to its barest minimum in Nigeria.
- Establish and manage the Lagos state Single Social Register (LASSR).
- Facilitate Community Based Targeting (CBT) through community-based targeting teams (CBTT) in partnership with the LGAs.
- Identify and register Poor and Vulnerable Households (PVHHs)
- Facilitate access to PVHHs data for intervention programs
- Educate on social safety net policies and guidelines.
- Provide appropriate links between government, development partners, private sectors, and NGOs on social safety nets.
- Share state single social register (SSR ) data with NASSCO.
How we Work
LASOCU is headed by a State Coordinator who supervises the other key officers in the four main departments: Finance, Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E), Management Information System (MIS), and State Social Registry (SSR).
The heads of these units have subordinate staff who are technocrats and civil servants with tenure contract/appointment. LASOCU reports to the State-appointed supervising authority MEPB on a quarterly basis.
Two desk officers (one each for State Registry and Cash Transfer) are responsible for the overall project implementation at the Local Government Area LGA level per guidelines provided by NASSCO.
The Community-Based Targeting Team (CBTT) are established in the LGAs with a mandate of carrying out Community-Based Targeting (CBT) in communities. The desk officers are specifically trained for the expected activities. Each CBTT includes six officers:
The LGA Community Development Officer will serve as the lead with three others from departments with experiences in community engagement including the National Orientation Agency (NOA) officer, these four are supported by two officers, one each from LASOCU and MEPB. In addition each team supervises six enumerators whose basic responsibility is collection of information from identified PVHHs.