By The Periscope reporter
Multi-Sectoral Crisis Recovery Project MCRP, for northeastern Nigeria, Monday distributed food commodities as palliative measure, targeting 700 most vulnerable families affected by the COVID-19 lockdown in Maiha Local Government Area, Northern Senatorial District of Adamawa state, Northeast Nigeria.
MCRP is a World Bank assisted programme aimed designed to support the government of Nigeria towards rehabilitating and improving critical service delivery infrastructure, improve the livelihood opportunities of conflict and displacement-affected communities, and strengthen social cohesion in the North East Participating States of Borno, Yobe and Adamawa; and in the event of an eligible crisis or emergency, to provide immediate and effective response to said eligible crisis or emergency.
MCRP has four components; the first being strengthening peace building, stability and social cohesion. The focus is on: transitional support toward stabilization and self-reliance by increasing and improving the access to basic necessity kits, and restoring immediate access to productive assets by providing agricultural inputs and livestock for farming families and trading commodities for non-farmers.
The second is the infrastructure rehabilitation and service delivery restoration and improvement. This component will include the rehabilitation of critical physical infrastructure and the sustainable restoration of service delivery.
The third is the technical assistance and program management support. This component will include TA for strengthening the institutional capacity for the coordination of the programmatic recovery program, in line with the Buhari Plan and the RPBA and strengthening the MCRP implementation capacity. Support for overall programmatic and policy coordination at the federal, interstate, and intrastate levels will include the provision of TA for the development of implementation and performance management frameworks for programmatic recovery.
The fourth component is the contingent emergency response.
The entire local government areas of Borno and Yobe states are participating in the programme, while the activities of MCRP in Adamawa state covers only seven local government areas ravaged by Boko Haram insurgency. These are Madagali, Maiha, Michika, Mubi North, Mubi South, Gombi and Hong local governments.
The scheme has previously empowered vulnerable beneficiaries with agricultural inputs, house utensils, skills acquisition training and empowerment and food items.
Empowering beneficiaries with livestock would have been carried out. Service provider was already contracted. It was however suspended till further notice owing to the Coronavirus pandemic.
However, the current distribution of food items as palliative measure to cushion down the effect of lockdown occasioned by covid-19 pandemic, is so far, the most transparent, where beneficiaries are invited in the open, though not been unmindful of the physical distancing, the Periscope investigation can reveal.
Mr. Haruna H. Furo the project manager CI, is the leader of the MCRP delegation. He was in company of other MCRP members, representatives of ADSEMA and security agencies to facilitate the distribution of the food items to 700 identified beneficiaries across Maiha LGA.
In a letter addressed to the LGA Chairman, with the heading: INTRODUCING MCRP FOOD ITEMS SUPPORT TO 1000 MOST VULNERABLE FAMILIES IN MAIHA LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA, dated May 7, 2020, signed by Mr Furo on behalf of the project coordinator, MCRP has notified that it would carry out its activities in Maiha.
“I wish to inform you that MCRP will, as part of its corporate social responsibilities, embark on the distribution of palliative (food items) to a targeted 700 most vulnerable families affected by the COVID-19 lockdown in your LGA on Tuesday 12th May, 2020, starting from 7:00am to 5:00pm.
“You are with the forgoing, requested to accord the team all the necessary support that may be required, including providing adequate security cover to both the team and the beneficiaries as the distribution pattern will be on non-contact basis.
“We look forward for your kind support and understanding, please,” the letter read.
Even though the exercise was slated for Tuesday 12th May, it was however carried out on Monday 11th May, 2020.
The food items distributed to each of the 700 most vulnerable families include;
Groundnut Oil, 1ltr
Spice, 1 packet
In his remarks, the Hon. Chairman Maiha local government, Dr. Idi Amin Pakka, having commended the MCRP initiative, expressed his heart-felt appreciation for the food security intervention in the face of COVID-19.
Idi said that following the lockdown order, people of his community found it extremely difficult to get what to eat, especially in this crucial time. Therefore, the palliative, would go a long way in assuaging the plight of his people.
Speaking with the Periscope reporter, Idi said he has provided adequate security for a hitch free exercise in addition to ensuring an effective, efficient and even distribution of the food items to the targeted families across the LGA, transparently too.
The exercise, Idi said, has also taken consideration of the use of face masks. Social distancing was also observed.
To be able to address the stress and financial constraints, in addition to the avoiding crowd, the beneficiaries of the palliative in Konkol, Belel and Sorau, districts, Maiha local authority has decided to take the palliative to individual districts for distribution.
Idi ardently assured that more support, more palliative would be pursued with vigour with a view to getting the vulnerable families out of hunger.
The beneficiaries thanked the MCRP Project Manager and the entire team for the Palliatives, which they said, would go a long way in cushioning down the effect of the stay-at-home and other orders.
Having commended the chairman of Maiha local government for his support, without which the exercise could not be effective, a beneficiary pleaded with the chairman to do more to be able to restore electricity in Maiha.