Ultimate Search: Nigerians in rampaging hunt for hidden COVID-19 palliative warehouses
Nigerians are rummaging around the country in search of warehouses where COVID-19 palliatives are allegedly hoarded.
This follows widespread attack and looting of palliatives warehouse in some states of the federation on Friday, 23th October, 2020.
It all started in Lagos on Thursday morning as hoodlums broken into the warehouse at the Monkey Village where thousands of bagged food items meant to be distributed to the mass are stored.
The Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to the Governor of Lagos State on New Media, Gawat Jubril, said the palliatives were donated by the Private Sector Coalition against COVID-19 (CACOVID) group and was set to be distributed if not for the EndSARS protest.
“Lagos State Government has condemned the vandalization of the warehouse at Mazamaza housing the food palliative packages donated to the State government by the Private Sector Coalition against COVID-19 (CACOVID) group.
The State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu had on September 22nd 2020 formally taken receipt of the food palliatives from the CACOVID team meant for distribution to the indigent.
In Kwara, the state government reportedly imposed a 24-hour curfew after residents discovered and looted COVID-19 Palliatives warehouse on Friday.
A large crowd had attacked government warehouses in the cargo terminal area and Agro mall with items such as spaghetti, noodles, salt, and sugar carted away.
In a broadcast late Friday night, Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq said the curfew became imperative in view of criminalities that had taken place within the metropolis in the last few hours.
Several persons were feared dead on Friday when security operatives opened fire on a warehouse containing COVID-19 palliatives in Ilorin, the Kwara capital, on Friday.
Warehouses in cargo terminal area and Agro mall in Kwara state were looted, with items such as spaghetti, noodles, salt and sugar carted away.
In a statement on Friday, Kwara Commissioner for Communications, Harriet Afolabi-Oshatimehi put up a vain attempt to explain why the items were not yet distributed.
“The remaining palliatives in the terminal, which the hoodlums preyed on until chased away by security agencies, were meant for special vulnerable groups and just one local government where names of the beneficiaries have just been delivered and officials have started distributing when the street urchins breached the wall of the facility.”
“It would be recalled that the CACOVID and the state government had since September 23rd flagged off the distribution of the palliatives. But it was meant for specific households, as dictated by CACOVID, and so names had to be properly generated to allow for transparent and orderly distribution,” Premium Times quoted the commissioner as saying.
In Calabar, over 3 warehouses filled with COVID 19 Palliative items were reportedly discovered as hoodlums hid under the guise of #EndSARS protest to loot several food items.
Cross River COVID-19 palliative warehouse at Bishop Moinagh Street, State Housing Authority in Calabar was the latest victim.
According the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) the hoodlums were seen in their numbers carting away bags of rice, noodles, salt and gallons of vegetable oil.
They had earlier in the day blocked the Muritala Mohammed Highway, restricting vehicular movement as more and more people trooped to the warehouse despite sounds of gunshot.
People were over-heard saying “the food is ours but they are keeping it for themselves” as they carted away items from the warehouses.
This forced Governor Ben Ayade to impose a 24-hour curfew in the state, starting from 6 PM on Friday.
The development came less than 24 hours after Ayade rolled out unprecedented social and welfare packages to Cross Riverians, making nonsense of the whole process and challenging the sincerity of his motive.
The story was not difference in Osun State as some angry youth broke into a warehouse in Ede town and carted away COVID-19 palliatives meant for distribution in the early hours of Friday.
Items such as beans, noodles, sugar, salt, garri, rice, pastas, vegetable oil, among others, were looted from the warehouse located within the moribund Cocoa Industry, Ede.
The Osun Food and Relief Committee on COVID-19 claimed that the looted items at a warehouse in Ede town were not hoarded, but rather kept for flag-off of official distribution.
In a statement in Osogbo, secretary to the committee, Bayo Jimoh, said that the looted items were donated to the committee as palliatives to the people by Private Sector Coalition Against COVID-19.
But his explanation raises more questions than answers, especially why it took them ages to distribute those items, despite the hardship in the land.
Governor Adegboyega Oyetola had in April, 2020, inaugurated a 21-member Food and Relief Committee to cushion the effect of COVID-19 on the people of the state.
The Friday ‘discoveries’ and looting have sparked series of fruitless search for ‘hoarded’ COVID-19 palliative items in hidden warehouses across the country as more and more Nigerians are rummaging around the country in search of warehouses where COVID-19 palliatives are allegedly hoarded.
The Osun incident took place barely 24 hours after the state government announced the suspension of dusk-till-dawn curfew imposed following the #EndSARS protest.
As Akwa Ibom State Governor suspended the 34-hour curfew imposed in the state, the question in lips of Uyo residents is: Where is Akwa Ibom COVID-19 Palliative Warehouses? They tend to be joining other Nigerians in rampaging hunt for hidden COVID-19 palliative warehouses.
Consequently, the is getting funny in Uyo, the state capital as Uyo girls promised to date guys who discover Akwa Ibom COVID-19 palliative warehouses.
Facebook users have been claiming to discover one warehouse after another and in one state after another the situation put more Nigerians in rampaging hunt for hidden COVID-19 palliative warehouses.
The Warehouse at Obio Imo has since been taken over by security personnel but Morenews.ng understands some hoodlums have monitoring the facility.
On Saturday evening, AIT reported that the Taraba State Covid-19 Palliatives Warehouse was overran by hundreds of Jalingo residents.
Security operatives stationed at the warehouse are overwhelmed and watch helplessly as residents come in with trucks, cars, and tricycles to loot palliatives
The warehouse has been the storage for relief materials for crisis and flood victims.