- There are claims that state governors hoarded COVID-19 palliatives during the lockdown while Nigerians were hungry
- In response to this allegation, SERAP has filed a petition before the ICPC to which the 36 governors will answer
- SERAP also called on the court to publish its finding after carrying out thorough investigations
The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has accused all 36 Nigerian governors of hoarding COVID-19 palliatives while citizens in their states were crying of hunger during and after the lockdown.
Following this allegation, SERAP has sued the governors before the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC).
The human rights group called on the ICPC to carry out an investigation into the issue and publish its findings including the names of the states involved in the alleged act, PM News reports.
The petition, signed by SERAP's deputy director, Kolawole Oluwadare, was sent on Saturday, October 24, to the ICPC's chairman, Professor Bolaji Owasanoye.
Part of the petition against the states read:
“It would seem that Nigerian authorities asked people to stay at home as a protective lockdown measure but then failed to discharge a legal responsibility to timely, effectively, and transparently distribute COVID-19 palliatives to ease the hardship faced by the poorest and most vulnerable people.”
“Unless promptly investigated, the allegations of hoarding and diversion would undermine public trust in any efforts to bring the spread of the pandemic under control, exacerbate the negative impact of the crisis, and deny those most in need access to basic necessities of life.
“Tracking, monitoring and ensuring COVID-19 palliatives are timely, effectively, and efficiently distributed to those most in need would improve transparency and accountability, respect for human rights, as well as remove the possibility of political considerations or bribery in the distribution of the palliatives.”
Meanwhile, Cross River COVID-19 palliative warehouse at Bishop Moinagh Street, State Housing Authority in Calabar had been looted by hoodlums.
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The hoodlums were seen in their numbers carting away bags of rice, noodles, salt and gallons of vegetable oil.
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