The Presidency yesterday disclosed that until now, over 50 trucks in every 100 trucks of food sent to the North-East to cater for those displaced by the Boko Haram sect were being diverted.
It said the ugly development was being addressed with the implementation of the Special Relief Intervention –an initiative launched by the Federal Government in Maiduguri on June 8.
The Senior Special Assistant to the Acting President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Laolu Akande, disclosed this in a statement made available to journalists.
Akande said an update report on the implementation was presented to the Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo, during a meeting he had with National Assembly members from the North-East at the Presidential Villa, Abuja on Friday.
He quoted the report presented to Osinbajo as revealing that the initiative is now delivering assorted grains to Internally Displaced Persons through over 1000 trucks and already have reached 12, 691 households in Borno State since it was inaugurated.
He said, “According to the update presented by the implementation team, the diversion of relief materials including food and related matters which has dogged food delivery to the IDPs would be significantly curbed under the new distribution matrix adopted under the initiative.
“For instance, over 1000 trucks of assorted grains are now on course, delivering the grains intact to beneficiaries since the commencement of the present programme as against the reported diversion of over 50 trucks in every 100 trucks sent to the North-East.”
Akande disclosed that under the new arrangement, 656 armed policemen would be involved in the movement of assorted grains from various reserves across the country to designated warehouses of the National Emergency Management Agency in the North-East for onward distribution to beneficiaries.
He added that another 1,376 military personnel would escort the grains to some IDPs in the hinterlands across the affected states of Borno, Adamawa and Yobe.
He quoted Osinbajo as describing the initiative as “a unique operation that promises to deliver on a well laid out plan.”
He said the Acting President assured all stakeholders that the process would remain transparent and the objectives fully actualised.
According to him, Osinbajo also disclosed that apart from the emergency food distribution, the Federal Government will also deliver on a holistic plan that includes empowerment because empowerment is an important feature of the relief intervention.
He said although the problems were immense, especially when compared to available resources, the Federal Government remains determined to deliver humanitarian aid through a process that is transparent and effective.