Oyo state government declares 1,800 bags of rice unfit for consumption, returned them to FG
Four days after receiving 1,800 bags of rice from the Federal Government, the Oyo state government, on Friday, resolved to return all the bags of rice having deemed the grains of rice to be infested and unhealthy for consumption.
Executive Adviser to Governor Seyi Makinde on Agribusiness, Dr Debo Akande, who made this announcement at state secretariat, Ibadan, said the decision was reached after a series of inspections done by the food security committee of the COVID-19 task force.
He said the state government discovered that the grains of rice were infested by weevil and other pests, and took the decision in the interest of the health of residents of the state.
Akande however said the return of the 1,800 bags will not affect the state’s distribution of palliatives, noting that the state had gathered enough rice for distribution to citizens.
He added that the state was keen on receiving replacement of the bags of rice from the Federal Government.
In contributing to provision of COVID-19 palliatives, Comptroller, Oyo/Osun command of the Nigeria Customs Service, Mrs Helen Ngozi, had on Monday, handed over 1,800 bags of rice each to the governments of Oyo, Osun and Ekiti states, while it handed over 600 bags to the Ondo State government.
“We received this items from the Federal Government via the federal ministry of humanitarian affairs and we brought them here to the warehouse and in it is in the process of further inspection, that we discovered that almost all the grains of rice has been infested by weevil and other pests.
“On that basis, we formed a committee to inspect it again so that we are really sure of what we have received and we think this rice is not is not consumable for human being.
“As such, such material cannot be distributed as part of palliatives in the state. We don’t want to start providing solution to a problem and then create another problem. We have done random selection we see that similar thing applies across board and the committee has agreed to return to its source. And if there is any replacement of good quality that will be sent to us, we will be glad to receive it.
“A good number of food items have been received by the food security committee. Even before we received those ones, we have received good number of products from the good citizens of the state and we have added with the one the state government is putting its funding into and that will be distributed in a couple of days. What we have done is that we put a robust system in place for distribution and that have finaliSed with.
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“We are returning all the 1,800 bags of rice. We initially assumed that it was just some part of it that was infested but some commissioners from five or six ministries came with me to inspect and we realised that it is not just some but quite a lot of them were infested. We do quality control of all that we receive it is just that that was received from the federal government that we found infested,” Akande said.