Speech Delivered by His Excellency, Engr. Abdullahi A. Sule, the Executive Governor of Nasarawa State on the Occasion of Distribution of COVID-19 Palliatives to Vulnerable People in the State, Lafia: Wednesday, 1st July, 2020

1. His Excellency, the Deputy Governor of Nasarawa State;

2. The Right Hon. Speaker, Nasarawa State House of Assembly;

3. The Hon. Chief Judge of Nasarawa State;

4. Principal Officers and Members of the State House of Assembly;

5. Members of the State Executive and Security Councils;

6. The Secretary to the Government of Nasarawa State;

7. The Head of the Civil Service;

8. Special Advisers;

9. The State Chairman, All Progressives Congress (APC);

10. Permanent Secretaries;

11. His Royal Highness, Hon. Justice Sidi Bage Muhammad I JSC (Rtd) Emir of Lafia and Chairman, Nasarawa State Council of Chiefs;

12. Chairmen and Chief Executives of Commissions, Boards and Parastatals;

13. Executive Chairmen of Local Government Councils and Overseers of Development Areas;

14. Your Royal Highnesses, Emirs and Chiefs present;

15. Gentlemen of the Press;

16. Ladies and Gentlemen.

It is with a sense of responsibility that I address you today on the occasion of the second phase of the distribution of food items as palliatives to the vulnerable people across the thirteen (13) Local Government Areas of the State.

2. It would be recalled that Government procured twelve (12) trucks of rice in our commitment to cushion the plight of our people during the locked down period as a result of the need to control the spread of CCVID-19 in the State. You are also aware that the Olam Farms Ltd also donated one (1) truck of six hundred (600) bags of rice bringing the total to thirteen (13) trucks. These trucks were distributed to the vulnerable people across the thirteen (13) Local Government Areas of the State at the first instance.

3. The distribution was carried out by a special Committee of Honourable Commissioners, Special Advisers, Local Government Council Chairmen and other appointees of Government. Today’s event is in furtherance of our commitment to continue to provide succour to the vulnerable households and indeed, the poorest of the poor across the nooks and crannies of the State.

4. My dear people of Nasarawa State, you would also recall that the State Government recently received essential commodities worth thirty-five (35) trucks of different food items from Coalition of Private Organization (CA COVID-19), as part of its support to complement Government efforts in cushioning the effects of hunger in this period of COVID-19 pandemic.

5. I commend the Coalition of Private Organization (CA COVID-19) and other philanthropists for this humanitarian gesture, aimed at assisting the less-privileged and vulnerable groups in the society. Indeed, this gesture is worthy of commendation.

6. Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, I need to state that these commodities will be shared across the one thousand, four hundred and ninety-five (1,495) polling units in the State. It is important to note that these food items are to be shared to the poorest of the poor who have no source of income to cater for their daily needs. In this wise, salary earners, businessmen and other privileged people are exempted from this intervention.

7. I need to state that Government has re-strengthened the palliatives distribution Committees at the Local Government, wards and polling unit levels to ensure transparency in the distribution of the palliatives. Accordingly, the State Steering Committee on COVID-19 will ensure strict supervision and keen monitoring of the distribution process. I need to put on notice that the Palliative Committee at all levels will be held accountable for any anomaly in the distribution of the palliatives.

8. I, therefore, charge you to justify the confidence Government reposed in you by ensuring transparency and fairness in the distribution of these palliatives which should be conducted irrespective of political consideration, religious affiliation and ethnic bias or any other form of sentiments. Above all, you must allow the fear of God to prevail in the course of carrying out your assigned responsibility.

9. Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, as you are aware, Government has continued to issue Proclamations in an effort to curb the spread of Coronavirus in the State. This is aimed at protecting the lives of our people against contracting the virus. As you may be aware, report from the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), indicates that, Nasarawa State recorded over two hundred (200) cases. It therefore, becomes necessary on all and sundry to continue to comply with the preventive measures and Government directives in order to prevent further spread of the virus in the State.

10. Let me use this opportunity to thank individuals and organizations for their immense contributions towards the fight against the virus. I assure you that Government will continue to support and complement the effort of individuals and groups in turning around the fortunes of our dear State and the country at large.

11. At this juncture, let me express our profound appreciation to the people of Nasarawa State for your understanding and resilience in our collective commitment to control and contain the spread of the pandemic in the State.

12. On this note, it is now my pleasure to flag-off the distribution of food items to the vulnerable people across the thirteen (13) Local Government Areas of the State

13. Thank you and may God bless us all.