RIVERS State Government has committed N2Billion of its 2020 contingency funds to purchase of foodstuffs for distribution to Rivers people as palliatives against hardship being posed by Corona Virus.
Wike during a Monday update briefing at the Government House, Port Harcourt, on the state’s efforts at fighting Covid-19, also disclosed that the only index case reported for Rivers so far could be discharged by weekend.
The Governor who had earlier in the day inaugurated a 24 man Committee for Distribution of Food Palliatives would Tuesday inaugurate a parallel 33 man committee headed by the Secretary to the State Government, Tammy Danagogo, who will reach out to purchase the target food items, first, from local farmers and fishermen.
He said, “We are going a step further to ensure no one complains of hunger in our state during this trying period.
Government has set aside N2billion to buy off all agricultural products produced in the state from farmers and fishermen.
“Our goal is to ensure that no agricultural product like yam, garri, plantain, palm oil and fish leaves our State during this period. While the farmers and fishermen will make their profits, the less privileged will have enough food supply for their families.”
He hoped the development would increase local production of food crops and sea products among local farmers in the state, boosting the local economy in the process.
On the air movement of expatriates into Rivers without the state’s knowledge of their Covid-19 status, Wike harped that he would no longer allow it as he continues to blame federal government on the development.
“I have said it. As a state, we may not have the power to restrain people from flying the airspace, but when you fly in, we (Rivers Government) won’t allow you to use our roads or enter into our cities. You will remain in your airport.
“As the oil and gas hub in this country, we are inundated with influx of expatriates coming in and out on daily basis. When these people come, they interact with our people and we are not aware of their Covid-19 status. What if one of them is infected and comes in to mix with people here?”