The Oyo and Osun Command of Nigeria Customs Service and the All Progressives Congress have joined the controversies over the state of 1,800 bags of rice donated to Oyo government by the Federal Government.
Oyo State Government had on Friday claimed the bags of rice donated as palliative to the Oyo State government through the Oyo and Osun Command is not fit for consumption.
An aide to Gov. Seyi Makinde on Agricbusiness, Dr Debo Akande on Friday, alleged that the rice given through the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and released by customs were infected with weevils.
However, ASC1 Abdullah Lagos, the Command Public Relations Officers, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Saturday in Ibadan that 6,000 bags of rice were given to Oyo, Ekiti, Osun and Ondo States.
He said that only Oyo State claimed that the 1,800 bags of rice released to them were infected and not good for consumption.
Lagos said that the claim by the Oyo state government was not fair and the command suspected a foul play.
“Representatives of Oyo, Ekiti and Osun states excluding that of Ondo were on ground together with representatives of Humanitarian Affairs to inspect the rice in our warehouse twice on Monday.
“Oyo state came to evacuate their rice on Tuesday and everybody was there, if the rice was not good as they claimed, all of us should be able to see it right there.
“In the process of evacuating, some fell down and tore and no weevil or any other insect came out of it.
“Oyo state even selected the rice they wanted themselves. Of all the states that collected the rice only Oyo state is saying all the 1,800 bags of rice given to them are infected.
“The rice we gave out are not infected and are fit for human consumption and we cannot give out infected rice,” Lagos said.
He said that the command would not receive any bad rice from anybody that wanted to return it because it could not join the bad rice with the good ones in their warehouse.
In the same vein, AbdulAzeez Olatunde, Oyo APC spokesman, accused the State Government of playing politics with the rice donation, according to The Cable.
“It’s very thoughtful of the federal government to have given the rice palliative to four states of Ekiti, Ondo, Osun and Oyo states, the same day,” he said.
“To God be the glory, none of the other three States that collected the rice consignment the same day had made similar complaints. This is another point to buttress our observations of unnecessary politicking of COVID-19 pandemic by the Oyo state government.
“Also, because the idea of total lockdown came from APC, Oyo state, the government chose an ineffective curfew of 7pm to 6am, which has been criticised by all reasonable stakeholders in Oyo state which Nigeria Medical Association, Oyo state chapter chairman publicly knocked on a popular radio station.”
The APC spokesman advised the state government to distribute the relief materials to the vulnerable in the state, fumigate all public places, instead of politicising the health of residents of the state.