By Lawrence Afolabi – Ilorin.
Kwara State Governor, Malam AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq called on Civil Society Organisations CSOs to to join hands with his administration to strengthen the delivery of his mandate.
Governor AbdulRazaq made the call in an open space meeting he had with Representatives of some prominent community based organisations, in accordance with COVID-19 safety protocols, in Ilorin
He said his recent call on various civil society organisations to monitor government’s palliatives was borne out of his belief that they were closer to the people and have better feedback mechanisms on how to make things better.
Those at the meeting were Dr Lawal Olohungbebe of the Centre for Community Development in KWASU; Salih Salihu of the Haashim Initiative for Community Advancement; Aliyu Moshood (Osho) of the Elites Network for Sustainable Development (ENETSUD); Anthonia Oshiniwe Theios Caregivers Initiative; Bola Olojoku of Mekunu Forum Agenda; Olaitan Salman Jimba of the Ilorin Emirate Youth Development; and Balogun AbdulGaniyu of the Kwara South Youths Movement.
AbdulRazaq told the activists that their understanding would be critical in the coming months as Kwara weathers the storm of global economic meltdown that comes with plummeting oil prices and the attendant scarce resources.
He said Kwara may receive as low as N1.5bn from the federal allocation from May, down from an average of N3bn in the previous months, as the NNPC might be unable to contribute anything to the national purse.
Responding to a suggestion on the lockdown, AbdulRazaq said the administration is constantly reviewing its strategies to curtail the spread of the virus and that nearly one million masks may be produced locally for distribution.
He said this might lead to Kwara gradually allowing people to return to work under specific safety measures.
Dr Lawal Olohungbebe, a community development expert who led the civil society groups to the meeting, commended the Governor for not politicising palliatives and for appreciating their roles in the distribution.
He said the government needed to look into getting accurate data for planning and to consider exploring natural resources.
He urged the Governor to weigh options on how to get the economy running without compromising safety protocols for COVID-19, adding that the administration also needs proper monitoring of projects to save cost.