Monday, December 6, 2021

COVID-19 Lockdown: Hunger grips Kaduna residents as demands for food increase

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Rayyan Alhassan
Rayyan Alhassan is a graduate of Journalism and Mass Communication at Sikkim Manipal University, Ghana. He is the acting Managing Editor at the Daily Nigerian newspaper, a position he has held for the past 3 years. He can be reached via [email protected], or, or @Rayyan88 on Twitter.
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Some residents of Kaduna have expressed reservation over the stay-at-home order imposed on the state government, and alleged that starvation was setting in.

A cross section of the residents, who spoke to the News Agency of Nigeria in separate interviews, said they could no longer go out in search of daily bread due to the lockdown.

They also called on the state government to initiate food stimulus to ease their sufferings.

Nuhu Bala, a resident of Lokoja Road, Rigasa area of Kaduna, said he was into transport business but stopped due to the lockdown, adding that he had exhausted the food supplies in his home.

Bala, however, commended the state government for the lockdown to prevent the spread of COVID-19, and called for palliative measures to assist the poor with food and medical supplies.

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Another resident, Muhammad Abubakar, a trader at the Central Market, said he suspended his businesses in compliance with the lockdown.

“I am now feeding my family from my capital with no assistance from anywhere and I cannot leave my children hungry.

“I hope the government both at the federal and state levels will consider the situation being experienced by the masses and support them with food and other essential commodities,” he said.

Sa’adatu Saidu, a 76-year-old woman, who resides at Abuja Road, Rigasa said that she and her husband had no means of earning due to illness.

She said that her husband had stroke and could not go out while she is diabetic patient who depended on alms to survive.

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She urged government to distribute food to the poor and vulnerable at the grassroots to enable them feed their families.

On his part, Salisu Musa, a commercial tricycle operator and a father of eight urged government to relax curfew so that people could work for some hours to enable them fend for their families.

“Tricycle riders were ordered to stop business even before the lockdown and there were no alternative means of livelihood; we are left with nothing, we only beg our family to be patient.

“Prices of food items has also skyrocketed. A measure of Garri sold at N300 as against its old price of N90, while corn flour sold for N300 as against N190 per measure before the lockdown,” he said.

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News Agency of Nigeria reports that Governor Nasir El-Rufai had in a state broadcast on March 26, announced plans to procure food and other essential commodities to mitigate the effects of the lockdown in the state.

The items would be distributed to community clusters in designated centres in rural and urban settlements in the state.


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