By Peter Duru – Makurdi
The Benue State Emergency Management Agency, SEMA, has clarified that the state government has not hoarded any of the palliative sent to the state by Coalition Against COVID-19 (CACOVID) for distribution to the poor to cushion the harsh effect of COVID-19 in the state.
The Executive Secretary of Benue SEMA, Dr Emmanuel Shior, who made the clarification Saturday in Makurdi lamenting the misleading information on the social media regarding the distribution of the said palliatives in the state.
According to Dr Shior, “some individuals have insinuated that the Benue State Government is hoarding large quantities of the palliatives. This allegation is baseless and mischievous.
“On receipt of the CACOVID food items, Governor Samuel Ortom directed SEMA to ensure equitable distribution of all the palliatives to the 23 local governments areas of the state, and this directive was carried out to the letter.
“The distribution of palliatives was done by Benue SEMA, local government chairmen, security agencies, civil society, CAN, JNI, traditional rulers, community leaders and CACOVID Monitoring and Evaluation Team.
“The central distribution was done at Benue SEMA warehouses in Makurdi for onward distribution to the poorest of the poor at the Local Government Areas and Council Wards levels by the Local Government Council Chairmen together with the Local Committees comprising the aforementioned critical Stakeholders.
“A summary of the items received and distributed to the 23 local government areas includes Rice 4,929 bags (10kg), Noddles 96,279 cartons, Pasta 49,029 cartons, Semo (5kg) 49,029 bags, Sugar (5kg) 49,029 bags and Salt 49,029 sachets.
“We, therefore, want the public to note that SEMA warehouses no longer have CACOVID palliatives after the distribution and we appreciate the people of the state for their sustained support to the government,” he added.