By Yemi Adeleye
Lagos, Dec. 3, 2020 The Agboyi-Ketu Local Council Development Area (LCDA) in Lagos State on Thursday disbursed N10 million as relief funds to 103 victims of the violence that trailed the October 2020 #EndSARS protest.
The Chairman of the Council, Mr Dele Oshinowo, who set up the Relief Fund Initiative on Oct. 31, 2020 said the fund was to cushion the effect of the violence on victims whose businesses and properties were destroyed during the protest.
Oshinowo presented the cheques to beneficiaries at the council’s secretariat.
He said that he shared in the pains of the residents who were victim of the massive destruction of property by hoodlums that hijacked the protest.
According to him, an independent committee is saddled with the responsibility of selecting beneficiaries, so as not to bring politics into the fund.
“We know your plights. We cannot continue to look at you without helping.
“I went round and saw the damage and looting of your sources of livelihood by these hoodlums. We cannot do it all; you have to accept the little we offer.
“You voted for us because you believed in us and at this trying times, we must not abandon you. The little we do will help you to start afresh, we need to help you.
“Please accept whatever we give you in love to start your business so as to care for your family and children. This is a people-oriented government.
“Some people doubted it when we issued the application form and failed to come, but today it is a reality,” Oshinowo said.
According to him, the cheques are available for the victims, but for those without bank accounts, the council has provided an arrangement to cash the money and give it to them.
Speaking at the event, Mr Abdulwaheed Odunuga, the Chairman of the council’s Relief Fund Initiative Committee, said that 104 victims applied for the fund but one was disqualified during the screening exercises.
“Agboyi-Ketu Local Council Development Area (LCDA) has unveiled the names of 103 individuals as recipients of the 10 million Relief Fund released by the Mayor Dele Oshinowo led-administration.
“This is to bring succour to victims of the recent unrest that trailed the #EndSARS protest.
“All applicants are being compensated for believing in the process, and also painstakingly fulfilling all conditions as requested in the relief fund form,” Odunuga said.
According to him, each beneficiary collected between N40,000 and N2 million.
One of the beneficiaries, Mrs Helen Ojomah, a food stuffs dealer, whose shop was looted, commended the council leader for rising to her help with a sum of N165, 000.
Ojomah noted that the amount was small compared to what was lost, but prayed God would continue to remember and bless the council chairman.
“The council boss has turned my sorrow to joy. He will find favour in life with his family.
“ I lost a lot because I supply rice and just took new stock when the incident happened,” Ojomah said.
Mr Musa Adeleye, Manager of HS Petroleum Station, Ketu, said that the gesture was better than nothing.
According to him, the gas station lost nine pumps, tankers, building and huge cash to the attack.
Adeleye said: “We requested for N200 million but got N2 million. It is better than zero.
“The hoodlums destroyed our nine pumps and our tanker. A Hilux, two official cars and roofs were also razed,’’ he said.
Another beneficiary, Tunde Ogunsola, Editor-in-Chief, Nigeria Education Times, Ketu, whose firm lost computers and building to the attack, commended the council boss for the gesture.