The senator representing Borno South at the Senate, Ali Ndume has accused the Presidential Committee on the distribution of COVID-19 palliatives of corruption.
Ndume, who is the Chairman Senate Committee on Army has, therefore, called for the disbandment of the committee.
He made the allegation and call when he addressed newsmen in Maiduguri on Tuesday.
According to the senator, the data generated for Social Investment Program (SIP) register, which is used in the distribution of COVID-19 palliatives, did not reflect the reality of the poverty level in the country.
The senator argued that majority of people currently benefitting from the palliatives did not deserve them, adding that states which deserve them most got little or nothing.
He said, “For example, the SIP register shows that in Borno State, there are 7130 households and 33,748 poor persons deserving the palliatives.
“This is ridiculous; I can get this number even in Mairi (a ward in Jere LGA, Borno State).
“I have reliable information that the register is fake; some people are rushing to steal the money meant for those who deserve the palliatives, and I feel pained about this.”
He also said, “The task force under the Chairmanship of each state governor should include a Senator and House of Assembly member from each state, the Army, Police, Civil Defense, religious organization, Red Cross, Civil Society Organisations to ensure the distribution of the palliatives; I don’t mind the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and members of Social Investment Programmes as members.
“Imagine Zamfara state, which happens to be the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs’ home state, has 291, 629 households and 1, 341,153 individuals captured under the National Social Register of Poor and Vulnerable households for March 2020, leaving Sokoto State which is adjudged as the poorest state in Nigeria with a paltry 3,347 households and 18, 435 individuals. Borno has only 7,130 households and 33,728 individuals.
“I have reliable information that even names they have generated is fake, the BVN is not fraud-proof, one person will generate thousands of names and after conniving with banks, they are issued BVN. Investigation will reveal all these.
“They have the names of their cooks, drivers, relatives, relatives of their house helps and those they call the poorest of the poor and give this money to them.
“I call on the press to join in the call to stop this callous act, you can imagine the situation our people are in at the moment, yet some people are rushing to either share or steal this money.”
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