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CSOs ask govt to release guidelines on distribution of relief materials

CSOs ask govt to release guidelines on distribution of relief materials
April 05
13:00 2020

A coalition of civil society groups has asked the federal and state governments to release guidelines on relief materials donated to cushion the effect of the lockdown on citizens.

The coalition includes Human and Environmental Development Agenda, (HEDA Resource Centre), Women Advocacy Research and Documentation Centre (WARD-C), Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) and HELP CENTRE.

Others are Civil Society Network Against Corruption,(CSNAC), Journalists for Democratic Rights (JODER) and International Peace and Civic Responsibility Centre.

In a statement on behalf of the coalitions Olanrewaju Suraju, HEDA chairman, said the authorities have the moral and constitutional responsibility to ensure openness and transparency in the handling of funds donated to help the masses.

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“We appreciate the affection shown by many Nigerians and the efforts of the Federal and State Governments to distribute food to the needy at this difficult moment in Nigerian history. However, we have not seen a clear modality that will safeguard the process against corruption,” Suraju said.

“We are concerned about what appears to be a lack of data, a process devoid of digital dashboard that will ensure the food being distributed reaches the poorest of the poor and not vested political interests.

“Beyond the palliatives, the Federal and State Governments should work at a long term framework that will ensure social and health security for Nigerians.

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“It should be clear to Nigerian authorities that public health security is key to sustainable development. COVID-19 has provided the impetus for urgent need to focus on the essentials of life of Nigerians which are food, housing and public health.”

They said they have mobilised 510 volunteers across the country to monitor the processes employed in the distribution of food items.

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