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A former Deputy National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Chief Olabode George, has faulted the continuation of National Home Grown School Feeding Programme during the lockdown.
The Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, had said, the ministry commenced Home-Grown School Feeding Programme, on Thursday, May 14, 2020, in Abuja and subsequently, in Lagos and Ogun States, before the other States of the Federation.
Although school children are at home with schools shut as a result of the pandemic, President Muhammadu Buhari during a March 29th, 2020 pronouncement, directed the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, to liaise with State governments to develop strategies on the continuation of the school feeding programme.
But a PDP chieftain, Mr George, in a statement on Sunday in Lagos, said it was through the unity of purpose and collective efforts of all citizens that the virus could be defeated.
He said the pandemic had thrown up serious issues in the economy, leading to hunger in the land with its attending problems.
The PDP chieftain, therefore, called for the provision of stimulus packages and palliatives to salvage the economy and alleviate suffering.
“Pumping money into school feeding programme while the schools are not open is a little absurd.
“It is a redundant, unworkable palliative. In a nation where there is no standard numbering of houses, how do you get the food to the beneficiaries? This is more than laughable. It is tragic,” he added
He said using the pandemic to play unnecessary partisan politics or stoke sectarian animosity would not do the nation any good.
George said the pandemic was about the survival of the nation, urging leaders and citizens to embrace a new nationalistic front to tackle the problem.
“We must never reduce this obvious national challenge to partisan feud. This is beyond section triumphalism or sectarian animosity.
“It is about the collective survival of our nation. Let us act by coming together, by discarding old divisions, and embracing a new nationalistic front that can hopefully salvage our country from this pandemic.
“Let our leaders rise in the true spirit of national vision and mobilise our people towards rescue and redemption.
“This is indeed how nations are built and strengthened in times of great challenges. We must wield this country together now in one indivisible brotherhood.
“There are no half measures. There are no separate ways. The solution must be collective, predicated in deliberately cultivated consensus,” he said.
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