COVID-19: Kwara Partners NGOs Against Coronavirus
The Executive Governor of Kwara State, Mallam Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq, has commended the Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in Kwara state that volunteered to monitor the distribution of the palliative items by Kwara State Government (KWSG) to reduce hunger associated with the COVID19-induced lockdown in the state.
It will be recalled that the Governor, on 6th April 2020, invited CSOs to monitor the exercise in order to ensure transparency and accountability in the process of distributing the items.
The Governor’s invitation empowered the State Technical Subcommittee on Palliatives to seek the help of CSOs, NGOs, and individuals in the monitoring of the process.
His words partly read “I thank you for answering our call. Your participation has been very impactful and we are grateful for that. Going forward, I want us to work together more closely. We will always need your buy-in and inputs to reach out to the people. I have called you to specially thank you for the credibility you bring to the process and for working with our team (which comprises eminent personalities).”
The Governor, having realized the key role of CSOs in the achievement of good governance, transparency, and accountability in a democracy, has further charged the CSOs in Kwara State to partner with his administration towards the delivery of the dividends of democracy to the citizens. While lamenting how the COVID-19 pandemic and the persistent decline in oil revenue, Abdulrahman expressed fear that the State might not be able to meet many of her expectations, especially in the area of salary payment and project execution if the situation persists without urgent and immediate solutions. He therefore specifically requested CSOs in the state to urgently come up with practical suggestions on how to solve the projected problems that the state might face in the coming months.
Representatives of the Kwara CSOs highlighted some urgent measures including investment in accurate data, prioritization of Agriculture, exploring the state’s natural resources, strengthening advocacy at the grassroots, the need for the Governor to do sensitization himself on COVID-19 using short videos on social media, mass production of protective face masks, among others. They promised to submit an advisory paper that the government may wish to consider as soon as possible. The Governor, while thanking the CSOs for the immediate suggestions, expressed his readiness to receive the paper and make use of the contents.
Those at the meeting were Dr. Lawal Olohungbebe of the Centre for Community Development in KWASU; Salih Salihu of the Haashim Initiative for Community Advancement; Aliyu Moshood (Osho) of the Elites Network for Sustainable Development (ENETSUD); Anthonia Oshiniwe Theios Caregivers Initiative; Bola Olojoku of Mekunu Forum Agenda; Olaitan Salman Jimba of the Ilorin Emirate Youth Development; and Balogun AbdulGaniyu of the Kwara South Youths Movement.
Some hints from the meeting that might manifest in the coming days include a possible review of the current lockdown in the state where people might resume to work under strict compliance with some measures, lease of tractors to farmers to boost Agriculture, the appointment of SA on NGO/CSO matters, a regular meeting between the Governor and the CSOs, among others.
On behalf of the following NGOs and individuals monitoring the distribution of KWSG’s palliative items in Kwara State:
1. Elites Network for Sustainable Development (ENetSuD)
2. Centre for Community Empowerment and Poverty Eradication (CCEPE)
3. Grassroots Development Monitoring and Advocacy Centre (GDMAC)
4. Brain Builders International (BBI)
5. Youth Advocacy Health Foundation Nigeria (YAHF-Nigeria)
6. Meadows Community and Development Outreach (MCDO)
7. Theios Caregivers Initiative
8. Impact Driven Initiative for Sustainable Development (IDISD)
9. Media Advocacy and Technologies Center (MATEC)
10. Organization for the Sustenance of the Nigeria Environment (OSNE)
11. Hashim Initiatives for Community Development (HICA)
12. Comrade Lukman Adana
13. Comrade Imam Kamal
14. Comrade Ridwan Aliyu
15. Comrade Abdulrauf T. Kuranga
Alagbonsi Abdullateef, Ph.D.,