By Martins Ifijeh
No fewer than 230 households in Wesere and Aivoji communities in Badagry have benefitted from the relief materials distributed by ActionAid Nigeria to cushion the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The distribution of palliatives in the communities which borders Benin Republic started on Sunday through ActionAid’s local partner, Humanity Family Foundation for Peace and Development (HUFFPED).
Speaking on the distribution of palliatives in the communities, the Communications Advisor, ActionAid Nigeria, , Kemi Akinremi said it was to cushion the effect of lockdown as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, which has led to hunger in the communities.
She said: “Wesere community is very far from the city centre and is closest to Benin Republic. Before the emergence of COVID-19, residents of Wesere community had access to basic facilities like healthcare and market in neighbouring country, Benin Republic.
“However, with the closure of the border, they have been unable to access markets for purchase and sales and the distance, bad road leading to the community have made them vulnerable at this time,” she said.
The two communities were also funded by ActionAid Nigeria’s local fundraising initiative.
The Executive Director of HUFFPED, Henry Adenigba said the items distributed as palliatives were decided upon by the communities themselves.
‘‘Women in the community specifically requested for food and we – ActionAid and HUFFPED decided we should provide them with a two-weeks supply which comprises of five kg of rice, 10kg of beans, 10kg of garri, half crate of egg, and other food condiments like a roll of tomato paste, maggi, and salt,” Adenigba said.
The Chairman, Badagry West Local Council Development Area, Joseph Henugbe, while appreciating the organisation for their kind gesture said more needs to be done for the people of the communities.
Henugbe said the palliatives from the government need to be augmented and called on the organisation to keep showing generosity to the communities.
One of the beneficiaries in Wesere Community, Awonronsu Maumeh said the food package was a huge relief and would cater for two weeks feeding for his family.
‘‘I rely heavily on handouts from people in the community because my disability has restrained me from being able to work and my children have also gone to town to look for a source of livelihood. They often send me money to feed but it is not regular. With the provisions from ActionAid, my two weeks feeding is assured,” he said.
Members of the communities were also sensitised on the precautionary measures to stay safe and remain healthy during the COVID-19 outbreak.