Coronavirus: Rwanda, two Nigerian states ‘feeding’ poor amid restrictions

The Rwandan government on Saturday, March 28, kick started a support initiative aimed at vulnerable families adversely affected by the ongoing COVID-19 lockdown.

Rwanda currently has 60 confirmed cases. President Paul Kagame had in a national address late last week highlighted the resolve of government to do everything possible to support vulnerable Rwandans during the lockdown citing its social and economic challenges.

The hard-hit Rwandans living in urban centres without a salaried income are the most affected.

The initiative kicked-off in some parts of the three districts of Kigali, state-run New Times said.

The food relief is being drawn from the country’s National Strategic Grain Reserve under the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources which is used in case of food shortage, the portal added. Over in Nigeria’s commercial hub of Lagos, the state government announced an Emergency Food Response as a means of supporting indigenes and the vulnerable. Neighbouring Ekiti State has announced a similar measures.

“We are all aware that this is a trying time for our citizens and since the partial drop in economic activities, our government deemed it necessary to reach out to the vulnerable ones in the society,” Lagos governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu said.

For his part, Ekiti State governor, Kayode Fayemi, issued a new set of Executive Order with a raft of orders which included reactivating the State’s food bank to support the vulnerable.

“I have directed that the Ekiti State Food Bank be reactivated immediately to provide food items to the poor and vulnerable families in our communities. The Task Force will announce the modalities as soon as the process is fully activated.

“The State Government will consider providing a stipend to our self-employed citizens whose daily income will be interrupted at this time as subsidy for their loss of income,” the order read in part.