Mrs Toyosi Akerele-Ogunsiji, Chairperson, COVID-19 Task Force of the Victims Support Fund handing over food items and PPEs to Chief Clement Maleghemi on behalf of the Olu of Warri, Ogiame Ikenwoli – photo NAN
By Edeki Igafe
Warri (Delta) – The COVID-19 Task Force of the Victims Support Fund (VSF) has donated food items and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) worth N154.5 million to Delta residents.
Its Chairperson, Mrs Toyosi Akerele-Ogunsiji, made this known to newsmen on Saturday in Warri, shortly after handing over some of the items to the Olu of Warri, Ogiame Ikenwoli.
The items were received on behalf of the monarch by Chief Clement Maleghemi.
Akerele-Ogunsiji said the task force had earlier in the day, handed over some items to the state government in Asaba before coming to Warri.
She said the food items were meant to cushion the effects of the global pandemic on indigents and vulnerable families in the state.
The chairperson said the items were: 10kg bags of rice, 10kg bags of beans, 10kg bags of cassava flake (gari), vegetable oil, salt, hand sanitisers, face masks, Hazmat suits, protective googles and safety boots.
Akerele-Ogunsiji said 2,658 households in the state were expected to benefit from the donation, adding that the items would be distributed by four NGOs based in Delta.
“The cumulative monetary value of our donation to Delta is N154.5 million targeting about 2,658 households and hoping these items gets to indigents and vulnerable families.
“Since the outbreak of COVID-19, lots of people have lost their jobs, a lot of companies are unable to function at full capacity.
“Government is operating at a very slow speed, a lot of things have come to a halt because of the fear of the human to human transmission of the pandemic.
“As a private sector-led humanitarian initiative in Nigeria, we support the citizens to ensure their economic status and livelihoods are not totally destroyed in midst of this global pandemic,” Ogunsiji said.
Recalled that Retired Gen. Theophilus Danjuma, Chairman of the VSF Committee, had on March 30, 2020, inaugurated the task force on Coronavirus intervention.
The task force was charged with the responsibility of fashioning out interventions that would complement the Federal Government’s effort in preventing the scourge through the provision of PPE and food items to the vulnerable.
“We kicked off this distribution on April 14 in Abuja as the first phase. Our second phase covers: Edo; Delta; Ebonyi; Ekiti and Enugu,” she said.
Akerele-Ogunsiji said that the task force had a solid data-driven monitoring tracking and evaluation mechanism to ensure even distribution of the items.
“We do not just donate food and leave. Our team will be on ground to join in the distribution,” she said.
The task force had earlier visited the Olu of Warri where the monarch was intimated on the development.
Responding, the monarch commended the task force and assured them that the items would be distributed judiciously.
“This support gives hope that Nigeria will succeed. We will distribute the items in a way that everybody will be happy,” the monarch assured.
Among the VSF task force were: Prof. Nana Tanko, Director of Programmes, Mr Alkasim Abdulkadir, member, Prof. Sunday Ochoche, member, among others.