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About 279 trucks of grains have been distributed to Lagos, Ogun and FCT, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Farouq, said on Tuesday.
These are states affected by the lockdown order of President Muhammadu Buhari.
The federal government had approved the release of 70,000 metric tonnes of grains for distribution to the poor and vulnerable to cushion the impact of the lockdown order in these states.
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, earlier said about 6,800 of the 70,000 metric tons of grains will be distributed in Lagos, Ogun and Abuja, while the rest will be distributed to the 13 frontline states that have recorded cases of the COVID-19.
Ms Farouq while responding to questions at the daily Presidential TaskForce briefing on COVID-19, said some of the grains have been distributed and plans are underway for the next deployment to frontline states.
“So far, we have deployed 279 trucks of grains to the three affected states locked down by the federal government and we are making plans for the next deployment to other frontline states,” she said.
She said the agency is yet to get the (full) 70,000 metric tonnes “because the grains are enormous and we lack space to keep them”.
“70,000 grains were approved by Mr President that it should be given to the PTF through the ministry and to be distributed to the three affected lockdown states by the federal government and then to other frontline states.
“We have not taken all the 70,000 metric tonnes of grains. So, we still have some grains in the silos because metric tonnes is quite a huge number. 2000 metric tonnes alone will require nothing less than 80 trucks to deploy, so it is quite a huge number and there is nowhere we can put these grains.
”We have to leave them in the silos and deploy as the need arises,” she said.