Ekiti State Governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi, on Wednesday disclosed that his administration had distributed over 60,000 food packs to the poor and vulnerable in its drive to cushion the negative effect of Covid-19 pandemic in the state.
He also announced a new phase of the food palliatives distribution, adding that government was committed to cushioning the effect of the pandemic through food and material support to the poor and vulnerable in the state.
Governor Fayemi stated this at the flag off ceremony of the Nigeria private sector, Coalition Against Covid-19 (CACOVID) Food Relief Programme for Ekiti state.
CACOVID donated food packs comprising 56,000 packs of Pasta; 28,000 packs of rice; 28,000 packs of Noodles; 28,000 sachet of salts; Sugar and Garri to the state government’s food bank.
The governor, who was represented at the event by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG) appreciated the leadership of CACOVID for bringing succor to the teeming people of the state.
He noted that the present administration in the state has been proactive in tackling the effect of the pandemic and lockdown on the people of the state adding that the distribution channels to households in the state had been highly effective.
The governor noted that from the feedback mechanism put in place, the food packs got to the targeted people in the state.
He said, “On behalf of government of Ekiti state I express the gratitude of government to CACOVID for this great honour of support to the government and people of Ekiti state.
“What is happening today in Ekiti state is a testimony to what is possible when the private sector decide to collaborate with public institutions. I wish to commend them by this strategic intervention of a national coalition like CACOVID that brought succor to a lot of families in Nigeria including Ekiti state.
“AS a government, we have been proactive in tackling the effect of the pandemic and lockdown on our people, as at today, the state government has distributed over 60,000 food packs to households in Ekiti state. We didn’t stop there, we also touched various unions, associations and people with disabilities, this is how far we have gone in Ekiti state.
“It will interest you to note that beneficiaries of our interventions are mined from the register of the poor and vulnerable compiled by the Ministry of Budget and Planning, supervised by the World Bank. The implication of this is that our intervention is devoid of politics, religious sentiments and primordial consideration.
“So as long as you are a citizen of Ekiti, irrespective of your political inclination, government is willing to assist you. Because COVID-19 doesn’t know anybody, it doesn’t know political party, it doesn’t know a Muslim of Christian, so, as long as you are from this state or you live here, we have intervened. I can assure CACOVID that this items will be judiciously distributed.
“The beauty of the Ekiti state approach is that we have put in place a very robust feedback mechanism to ensure that consignments get to the doorsteps of beneficiaries in accordance with the Covid-19 guidelines for social distancing, we don’t congregate them, we take the food items to their doorsteps and this is being done by some volunteers resident in Ekiti that see it as their own corporate social responsibility and are being coordinated by the Wife of Governor. So CACOVID can be rest assured that what they have brought to Ekiti state would be judiciously distributed.”
Earlier, a representative of CACOVID, Mr Kayode Adejuyigbe said the effort was part of the collective responsibility in the fight against Covid-19 in Ekiti state in particular and Nigeria in general.
Mr Adejuyigbe said CACOVID was a joint initiative of leading private sector in Lagos and the Central Bank of Nigeria, launched to galvanize support in the fight against Covid-19 in the country, noting that the fight for survival had become a necessity which should not be the sole responsibility of the government but a collective one.
He disclosed that in its effort to ensure that Covid-19 was drastically reduced nationally, the coalition in collaboration with the state governments had commissioned 38 Isolation centres in the country in addition to assisting in improving the testing capacity of NCDC with the donation of over 100,000 test kits at various testing centres.
Other top government functionaries at the event are the Chief of Staff to the Governor, Hon. Biodun Omoleye; Special Adviser on Development Partnerships, Mrs Margaret Fagboyo; Special Adviser on Communications and Strategy, Mrs Sola Salako-Ajulo, Senior Special Assistant on SDG, Mrs Bolanle Solanke among others.