By Abiodun Esan
Ilorin, Aug. 11, 2020 Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq of Kwara, on Tuesday said the organised private sector played strategic roles in Nigeria’s campaign against COVID-19 pandemic.
AbdulRazaq stated this in Illorin at the inauguration of the distribution exercise of food items donated by the private sector-led Coalition Against COVID-19 (CACOVID) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
He lauded the Coalition for the establishment of the isolation centres, medical interventions and the donation of food palliatives to vulnerable households across the country.
AbdulRazaq said: “We are very appreciative of the efforts by CACOVID in the fight against COVID-19 pandemic.
“This is not the first, they were with us at the isolation centre where it made donations of medical supplies and other things.
“The food palliative is another move, we are really grateful for their interventions to governments across the country.”
According to him, the state government will work with CACOVID team to ensure that the palliative get to the targeted beneficiaries.
AbdulRazaq commended the government’s palliative committee led by the Emir of Shonga, Dr Haliru Yahya and the Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) for the great job done in the distribution exercise.
He lauded Aliko Dangote and others for the feat achieved in the distribution of food items to the state governments in the country.
“The Coalition understands that it cannot give food to all Nigerians and that is why it is targeted at the vulnerable families. We are working with them to ensure that it goes to the ward level.
“Unlike what we distributed earlier, this is for specific households and I want to appeal to our people to understand that.
“This is not the time to say what I got is too small. Whatever you get, please be grateful to God,” he said.
According to him, the Coalition has a template for the food distribution, adding the state government would use it to guide the distribution exercise.
AbdulRazaq further commended community and religious leaders for their support and understanding in the campaign against COVID-19 pandemic.
Also speaking, Muhammad Adelabu, CACOVID Representative and Zonal Head of Access Bank, said the Coalition aimed to support Nigerian government in the fight against the pandemic.
Adelabu said the Coalition had so far inaugurated 38 isolation centres, donated over 100,000 test kits and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to the 36 states in the country.
“Today, we have commenced the third phase of our intervention plan in the fight to combat and eradicate COVID-19 in Nigeria.
“CACOVID National Food Relief Programme will see the distribution of various food items to over 1.6m families, representing over 10 million Nigerians across the country.
“We are doing this to help the most vulnerable households affected by the Coronavirus,” Adelabu said.
Some of the beneficiaries, Isa Ibrahim and Tunde Mohammed, commended the Coalition for the gesture, adding that it would go a long way to alleviate their sufferings.
They also commended the state government for effective response to combat the pandemic as well as viable projects executed for the overall well being of the people of the state.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Coalition donated assorted food items and consumables for distribution to vulnerable households in the state, to cushion the effects of COVID-19 pandemic.
The items include: 27,360 bags of semolina; 27,360 bags of sugar; 27,360 cartons of pasta; 27,360 bags of salt; 27,360 (10kg) bags of rice; and 54,720 cartons of noodles.