A day after PREMIUM TIMES’ report, the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) paid part of an outstanding allowance of a corps member, Gbenga Dada, who was shot in March at his place of primary assignment in Bayelsa State.
PREMIUM TIMES reported how hoodlums, on March 20, attacked a hostel where corps members serving at Victory International School, Swali Yenagoa in Bayelsa State, lived.
Two corps members, Oluwatobiloba Popoola and George Onakpoma, were killed in the attack.
This newspaper also revealed how the only survivor of the attack, Mr Dada, was not paid his April and May monthly allowances while he was in hospital receiving treatment for gunshot injuries he sustained from the attack.
Narrating his ordeal to PREMIUM TIMES at the time, he said he “felt betrayed by Nigeria,” after making several requests to get his payment.
To get monthly payment, corps members are expected to get monthly letters from their place of primary assignment to confirm that they truly worked for the month. After receiving the letter, they take it to the NYSC Secretariat at their local government following which they are paid for the month.
Mr Dada could not do this because he was at the hospital.
However, speaking with PREMIUM TIMES on Tuesday evening, he confirmed that NYSC paid one month’s allowance and also promised to fast track the remaining month’s outstanding fee.
“The NYSC called today (Tuesday) and they have paid for one month. They said I should not worry that I will get the other one soonest.”
He told PREMIUM TIMES he will be fully satisfied when the full payment is made.
“Among other things, I demand the remaining payment of my allowance. The government is stupendously rich. I was hoping for compensations for health damages but that never came, as expected,” he said. “I’m only asking for my entitlement”.
PREMIUM TIMES again reached out to new NYSC coordinator in Bayelsa, Elizabeth Ojugo.
She told our correspondent that she “will also request for the payment of the allowance of the corps member.”
When questioned about what the scheme is planning for the family of the slain corps members, she told our correspondent that she is new in the state but will reach out to Abuja to get full details of the incident.
She also called on stakeholders to improve security for corps members serving in the state.
The NYSC scheme is compulsory for Nigerians who graduate before the age of 30. It is an experience many graduates usually look forward to.