CaCovid Palliatives: Hunger, Excuses, and Lies
When hunger rules the land, cooking of stones becomes an option. This has become the case for most Nigerians who would easily opt for cooking stones. There is no other word to paint the nature of hunger in the land as we now have many beggars in suit and ties. A stroll across the social media space will bring you directly with the various gimmicks Nigerians now employ to beg for money and food.
The already harsh and difficult condition was made worsen with the outbreak of the Covid-19. Some Nigerians who before Covid could make do with two meals a day could now barely get one. The Federal Government knows that it was sitting on a keg of gun powder decided to roll out palliatives to help reduce the effect of the hunger in the land. The joyous news was short-lived as Nigerians later realize that a loaf of bread and two cups of Garri would not survive a family of 5 for a day and that was the measure most Nigerians received, for those who were fortunate to have received.
Coming to the aid of the Federal Government was the private sector, who felt there was a need to contribute their quota to help ameliorate the situation caused by the Covid19. An Initiative was set up by the private sector where a large number of palliatives were donated to the government for onward distribution to the masses.
The Coalition Against COVID-19 is a private sector-led organization in Nigeria established to assist the government in combating the Coronavirus disease in the country. It was launched on March 26, 2020, following an announcement made by the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele. The Coalition Against COVID-19 (CACOVID) is a Private Sector task force in partnership with the Federal Government, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), and the World Health Organization (WHO) with the sole aim of combating Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Nigeria. This task force is tasked with pulling resources across industries to provide technical and operational support while providing funding and building advocacy through aggressive awareness drives.
Rather than distribute the palliatives some element in government felt it was better to hoard the palliatives for their gains, while the large masses languish in hunger. However, what seems to be a twist in the whole story of the palliatives emerges on the 21st of October 2020 when Covid-19 palliatives become the new prey across the country as Nigerians took it into their hand to find locations where CaCovid palliatives were stored.
Lagos was the first place where the hungry and angry Nigerians stormed and looted a 600meters wide warehouse in the Maza-Maza Amuwo-odofin area of the state where the state government had stored CACovid palliatives. The news of how the location of the warehouse got to the open is still a bit clear. Though there are still postulations and assumptions, we should not forget that a hungry shark can smile blood miles away in the open ocean.
Hungry Nigerians needed no second invite to share from what they tagged “Nah our own”, the 600-meter wide warehouse was looted empty, it was a fee spoils for Nigerians as people travel for miles disobeying the Curfew to get to the location of the warehouse. “Who no want free thing”? It was looting galore or should I say possess your possession. Even the security personnel that were deployed to come and stop the looting joined in carrying their share, Shey soldier man family no dey chop food?
Within minutes when the looting has started, News and videos showing Nigerians possessing their possession filled the social media, the comments and reactions were enough to conclude that everybody wanted to share from the spoils. With just a few weeks to December, people tagged their CACOVID palliatives loots Detty December. Who would not want a Detty December? With the rise in inflation and the cost of the commodity in the market, Nigerians are not just angry with the government but also hungry.
As the news of the discovered Cacovid palliatives warehouse in Lagos began to spread, people residing in other states of the country set out in search of their palliatives, Abi nah only Lagos state get warehouse? within days warehouse where Cacovid palliatives were stored has been discovered and looted in Ogun, Ibadan, Kaduna, kano Abuja, Kogi, Gombe, Ondo, Osun, Ekiti, Delta, Kwara, Cross River, Jos, and Akwa-Ibom.
With the growing spree of Cacovid palliatives looting going on across the country, the various state government where palliatives have been looted started to give excuses why the palliatives have not been distributed. In Lagos state the governor Lagos state while condemning the looting of the Cacovid palliative said the palliatives were received in late September 2020 as against the misinformation that this was part of the Covid-19 palliatives that the Federal government has issued to the state in May 2020 to help ameliorate the harsh ship caused by the Covid-19 pandemic on Nigeria. The governor said the palliatives were part of the palliatives received from the private sector Coalition Against Covid-19.
The Lagos State government also said that they have already started distributing the palliatives to various foundations and people with disabilities across the state before the outbreak of the Endsars protest. However, the Lagos state government forgot to tell us how large chucks of these same Cacovid palliatives got to the residence of a Lagos king and various members of both state and federal house of rep members. A particular honorable in the Lagos state house of assembly representing the Amuwo-Odofin area of the state used some of the Cacovid palliatives as souvenirs during her birthday celebration.
In Kwara state, the state government said it has started distributing the Cacovid palliatives to people of the state affected by the flood. The government of Abdulrahman Abdulrazak should note that the Cacovid palliatives were meant to help against hunger as a result of the Covid-19, not for flood emergencies. We cannot continue to rob Paul to pay Peter, and such a way of doing things only breeds corruption.
Across the country, the various state government has laden the newsprints filled with excuses why the Cacovid palliatives where distributed. Some state governments have outrightly denied that they even receive any Cacovid palliatives, just like our Oyo state governor he said the Cacovid palliatives warehouse that was looted did not belong to the state.
As the looting of the Cacovid palliatives warehouse continued many greedy and criminal minded Nigerians took the opportunity to also possess what is not part of their possession. We watch with disdained as Nigerians all in the name of looking for where Cacovid palliatives were stored looted shops, malls, warehouse of fellow hungry and angry Nigerians.
The government is not truthful, the people are not satisfied. All in the name of having control over the Cacovid palliatives both government and its citizens have dived into a game of greed. Cacovid palliatives, the hunger, the excuses, the lies.
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