COVID-19: Senator Ndume wants palliatives committee disbanded
- Senator Ali Ndume has said the distribution of COVID-19 palliatives is fraudulent
- The senator alleged that most of those benefitting from the palliatives do not deserve them
- The APC senator also called for the disbandment of the presidential committee responsible for the distribution
The chairman Senate committee on the army, Senator Muhammadu Ali Ndume, has called for the disbandment of the presidential committee on the distribution of COVID-19 palliatives.
Ndume, a former Senate leader, representing Borno South senatorial district, alleged that the distribution exercise is fraudulent, Daily Trust reports.
The All Progressives Congress (APC) senator made the allegation while addressing journalists in Maiduguri, the Borno state capital on Tuesday, April 13.
According to him, the data generated for Social Investment Program (SIP) register, on the basis of which the palliatives are being distributed, does not reflect the reality of the poverty level in the country.
He said most of those benefitting from the palliatives do not deserve them, and states which deserve them most get little or nothing.
“For example, the SIP register shows that in Borno state, there are 7130 households and 33,748 poor persons deserving the palliatives. This is ridiculous; I can get this number even in Mairi (a ward in Jere local government area of Borno state),” he said.
“I have reliable information that the register is fake; some people are rushing to steal the money meant for those who deserve the palliatives, and I feel pained about this,” he added.
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Recall that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had alleged that officials of the APC-led federal government are using the deadly COVID-19 pandemic as a gateway for corrupt profiteering and looting of the nation's treasury.
The party made the allegation in a statement sent to journalists on Saturday, April 11 by its spokesman, Kola Ologbodiyan.
The opposition party lamented that “allegations of diversion of billions of naira meant for palliatives to vulnerable citizens is already frustrating the commitment by Nigerians and other well-meaning groups in the overall effort to combat the spread of the scourge in our country.”
“Our party is worried over the activities of certain officials who are using the COVID-19 pandemic to create and manipulate situations that circumvent financial documentation and accountability rules and pave way for the looting of our treasury and borrowed funds, while the people are left at the mercy of the plague,” the PDP stated.
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