COVID-19: FCTA, councils, chiefs accused of selective palliative distribution

SayNoCampaign Group has accused the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), council and community officials of selective distribution of palliatives to Abuja residents.

Newzandar News had reported the situation in Bhyazin, an outskirt of Kubwa, where FCTA staff and local chiefs declared that the palliatives were for only indigenes.

The situation triggered chaos that stopped the disbursement, caused injuries and clash between security operatives and residents. Some were arrested for recording the event with their phones.

In a statement, Ezenwa Nwagwu, co-convener of the civil society group, claimed that in Gwagwalada, selected community members were favoured thereby blocking the less privileged and physically challenged from benefiting from the intervention.

He noted that the leadership of the area councils, distribution officials and traditional leaders were accused of hoarding the limited ‘selection pass.’

“We gathered that the pass was shared at night between the day before the end of the distribution exercise in Gwagwalada. Priority was not given to the vulnerable or less privileged as intended.”

The group said some people allegedly collected over 10 ‘selection pass’ and shared them with their friends, relatives and loyalists.

SayNoCampaign lamented that aside from the discriminatory and opaque method adopted, beneficiaries also defied the COVID-19 social distancing guideline.

Nwagwu wondered why the area council failed to stick to its house to house distribution as exemplified during the flag off.

“Why aren’t efforts made to properly identify the most vulnerable and make the delivery to them?” he quipped.

The activist warned that the actions of selfish individuals might defeat the purpose of the palliatives as the majority of those who truly needed assistance were being overlooked.

“We are also demanding that area councils adhere to the beneficiary lists earlier compiled and if the list is exhausted during distribution, the scope can be expanded.

“This will ensure that vulnerable members of communities are not exempted from the packages,” Nwagwu advocated.


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