The government of Ondo State, today received three trailers of rice and 700 gallons of vegetable oil from the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management as part of measures to cushion the effect of the COVID-19 lockdown in Nigeria.
The state governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, officially received the palliative items at the government House ground, Alagbaka from the State Coordinating Unit of the Youths Empowerment and Social Support Operations, YESSO.
After inspecting the items, the governor handed them over to the State Palliative Committee for onward distribution across the state to serve as second round.
Addressing journalists, Akeredolu said: “We can all see the palliatives items. I have confirmed the receipt of these to the Minister during our visual meeting. We are grateful to the Federal Government and we look forward to more, so that we can keep getting out to our people.
” It is now over to the chairman of the palliative committee and make sure you distribute to all Local governments, everybody must get. We’ve covered all the local governments in the first round and the second round is going to start very soon. If we still have more palliative to give, we will also do”, he said.
The governor, however warned that expired rice shouldn’t be shared to the people of the state, noting that he had the assurance of the Minister to replace any item found to be below standard.
Presenting the items to the governor, the State Coordinator of YESSO, Mr. Bankole Olaoluwa said each trailer of rice contains 600 50kg bags of polished rice and 700 25 litres of groundnut oil.
According to him, the State Coordinating Unit of YESSO had been able to provide the state with Social Register of poor and vulnerable by capturing over 20,000 heads of households, which would aid the distribution of the palliatives.
He added that the social registration exercise is ongoing, as not all the Local government areas have been captured.
“Under this administration, there is a public welfare component of YESSO, where we have been paying stipend to over 5,000 youths in the state.
Also, there is a state special fund for the elderly. Before the advent of COVID-19, the state governor recognises that we have vulnerable people and has been doing his best to assist them, but this situation we are now leads to more vulnerables in our society”. He said.
Also speaking, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Public and Intergovernmental Relations, who doubles as State Focal person for Social Investment, Mrs Olubunmi Ademosu thanked the governor for ensuring that the poor and vulnerables were not left out but allowed the state to key into the social register programme in 2017.
She assured that, even though, virtually every body in the social register might not be assisted at the same time, as time goes on, every live would be touched, while noting that the YESSO team would collaborate with the palliative committee to ensure that the targeted beneficiaries received the items.