Tony John, Port Harcourt
Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) has kicked-off the distribution of medical supplies, relief materials and public enlightenment campaign materials to contain the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) across the Niger Delta.
Speaking during the kick-off ceremony at the NDDC warehouse in Trans-Amadi Industrial Layout, Port Harcourt, the commission’s acting Managing Director, Kemebradikumo Pondei, lamented the poor state of health facilities in the country, specifically in most states of the Niger Delta, saying it was a major constraint in the fight against COVID-19.
He said: “No doubt, the disease has also taken its toll on the socio-economic well-being of citizens, especially as most small and medium scale businesses have been affected with the lockdown.”
Pondei said the economic wellbeing of the people of the region was further dwindled due to the series of lockdowns imposed by both the federal and state governments as a precautionary measure to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in the country.
He noted that the commission was always desirous to support the government and people of the states in the Niger Delta in the area of quality healthcare delivery.
Pondei said: “The commission looks forward to strengthening relationship with the states in the region in the area of healthcare for the good and well-being of the residents.
“The good relationship between the governments of states in the region offers opportunity for synergy in efforts geared towards providing lasting solution to the socio-economic challenges of the people in the region,” he said.
Pondei said the NDDC needed to complement the efforts of the nine states covered by its mandate in response to the directive of President Muhammadu Buhari.
“All the nine NDDC states were supported with funds. In addition, funds were also given to women and youth groups as palliatives,” he said.