Okwe Obi, Abuja
The Federal Government has insisted that state officials hoarded COVID-19 palliatives that were looted during the #EndSARS protest.
During the #EndSARS protest, warehouses in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, Lagos, Cross River, Enugu, Ebonyi and Oyo states respectively were vandalised and items looted by suspected hoodlums.
The government explained the items were donated to states for onward distribution but wondered why those in charge decided to stash them away in the midst of economic austerity.
Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Umar Farouq, disclosed during a colloquium to review the COVID-19 humanitarian response intervention, yesterday, in Abuja.
“Recently, the world has witnessed the unfortunate incidence of looting of palliatives and relief materials stashed away in warehouses in some states during the #EndSARS protest.
“I, as the minister of Humanitarian Affairs, want to categorically state that the palliatives donated to the ministry by the Nigerian Customs Services, National Strategic Grain Reserve, and many good willing donors were handed to state officials for onward distribution to the poor and vulnerable in their states,” she said.
Farouq scored herself high on the implementation of the National Social Investment Scheme, instituted by President Muhammadu Buhari in 2016, particularly Job Creation Unit/N-Power.
“This programme was created to help young Nigerians acquire and develop life-long skills to become active players in the domestic and global markets.
“A total of 544,949 beneficiaries comprising of 498,602 graduates and 46,347 non-graduate young unemployed Nigerians have been trained in the provision of volunteer service in critical socio-economic sectors such as education, health and agriculture and are paid N30,000 and N10,000 respectively as monthly stipend for 2-year.
“After the two-year, facts and reports show that some of the beneficiaries of Batch A and B of the programme have established businesses in their communities, with no fewer than 109,823 beneficiaries of the N-Power Programme who have identified themselves as business owners,” she said.