Communities Applaud Kwara State for Food Distribution

By Tunde Akanbi, Ilorin

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The Kwara State Government, North Central Nigeria has begun fresh distribution of food palliatives across different demographics in the state, especially urban poor.

 

The government began the distribution of rice through religious leaders, nongovernmental bodies, and community-based groups, among others.

 

It is another layer of government support to cushion the effects of fuel subsidy removal and the high cost of living.

 

Speaking on the sidelines of the distribution at the Banquet Hall, Opposite Government House Ilorin, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Community Development, Dr Lawal Olohungbebe said the government is reaching out to the downtrodden through community-based- Organisations, CBOs and religious leaders because of their closeness to the people.

 

“We believe these CBOs and clerics are closer to the people. They know where the shoes pinch in the communities. They know those who are actually in dire need. For the NGOs, they have been working with the needy all these while, and we want to make use of the existing structure to reach out to the downtrodden at this crucial time,” Olohungbebe explained. 

 

“For the CBOs and CSOs alone (apart from what is being shared through religious bodies), we have 20,000 bags of 10kg rice for the urban poor, especially in the state capital in this phase. So, more bags will be going to the densely populated local government areas through the CBOs. We have also picked some CSOs and NGOs that we know that are working with the poor. Every NGO has its thematic area, and we picked those working with the poor. 

 

“We have considered the population of the community-based organisations that we have. Most of them are registered with the government. So, they are recognised and certified. We have picked some of them from this first phase of palliative distribution.”

 

Olohungbebe added that the state government has various channels of distributing palliatives to the masses aside from the distribution of 20,000 bags of 10kg rice through CBOs and NGOs in selected areas.

 

The State government had last year distributed 250,000 bags of 10kg of rice across the state as palliatives to cushion the effects of fuel subsidy removal.

 

The current distribution is in the state capital, while the next phase will move to other parts of the state, among other initiatives of the government.

 

Representatives of community-based organisations, who spoke with newsmen while receiving the rice applauded Governor AbdulRazaq for his concern for the plight of the people, and said the palliative would bring relief to the people and reduce pressure on the state government.

AbdulRazaq Jimba of Magaji Ngeri Joint Youths Association in Ilorin West Local Government Area said: “We are here to receive 100 bags of palliative from the Kwara State Government on behalf of our community. Like the previous one, we believe this will bring relief to our people in the community.”

 

Babatunde Mashood of the Edun Development Association in Ilorin South also said: “We were called to receive 100 bags of 10kg rice on behalf of our community. This will go a long way in reducing hardship in our area, especially among the poor. The state government is doing its own to reduce the hardship in our community and the state as a whole.”

 

Dominica Nwabufo