Segun Ayinde, Abeokuta
Governor Dapo Abiodun of Ogun State has disclosed that his administration will use the 5,400 polling units in the state as reference point for the distribution of 300,000 bags of 10kg rice palliatives to residents.
Abiodun, who made this known while inaugurating the distribution of 300,000 bags of 10kg bags of rice palliatives to citizens of the state in Abeokuta, the state capital, said that the initiative would go a long to cushion the effects of subsidy removed on the people.
The event, which took place on Friday, was in line, according to the governor, with the promise he made to the people of the state to ensure the immediate distribution of the palliatives as soon as they arrive the state
Abiodun, who acknowledged that the palliatives were sent to states by the Presidential Bola Tunubi led administration federal government said the state had domesticated it and would use polling units instead of wards as point of reference for distribution
“This is a federal government initiative under the leadership of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu that is being domesticated right here in Ogun State.
“Our desire in the first instance is to distribute about 300,000 bags of 10kg rice across our 5,400 polling units.
“We have decided to use the polling units as a reference of distribution, not wards, because we realized that using wards won’t be equitable.
“You can imagine taking a ward in Sagamu, for example, like the Ogijo ward and compare it with a ward in Ikenne. If we use the ward as the yardstick for distributing the palliatives, it is very unfair and not equitable.
“But because we know that the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC) has done a very detailed arrangement of our polling units to the point where all of us belong to a polling unit and that has allowed us to determine the number of people that are in our different wards.
“So you find out that a ward in Ogijo, for example, will have by far more polling units than a ward in Ikenne or Remo North. So we decided that we will use the polling units as a point of reference,” he said.
The governor stressed that a committee made up of eminent men and women of distinguished character has been set up to oversee the distribution of the palliatives.
He divulged that the committee, chaired by his deputy, Engineer Noimot Salako-Oyedele would ensure that the palliative distribution is effectively implemented, while the 20 local governments will also have similar committees.
“This committee is made up of very eminent, dependable, and distinguished men and women across the state.
“The committee will be chaired by my Deputy Governor and she will be supported by our former deputy governors that are here present, two members of the National Assembly, one representing the House of Representatives, and the other representing the Senate.
“Members of the state’s Assembly, namely the Deputy Speaker and the Minority Leader, our Iyalojas, our CDCs, CDAs, members of our youth community, our inter-ethnic representatives, our community leaders and other distinguished eminent personalities that we believe will ensure that the palliative distribution is effectively, efficiently and transparently implemented,” he added
To him, the Central Working Committee (CWC) will be saddled with the authority to inaugurate committees in each of the 20 local government areas of the state.
He added that committees in each local government will comprise the council chairman, Governor’s Liaison Officers (GLO), a member of the state House of Assembly in each local government, religious leaders, community leaders, youths, students, Iyalojas and the traditional institution.
Abiodun, while commending President Tinubu for conceptualizing the programme to cushion the effect of the removal of the fuel subsidy, said that his administration has classified the various interventions of the president, which his administration has domesticated into the immediate, medium and long terms.
Earlier, in their separate remarks, the representatives of the Community Development Associations (CDAs), Usman Olamilekan, and the Nigeria Union of Pensioners (NUP); Comrade Bola Lawal, the Iyaloja General, Alhaja Yemisi Abass, commended Governor Abiodun for his open-door policy on the palliatives.