It is pertinent to react to the publication in some national newspapers that the Ondo State Government has rejected the bags of rice supplied to it by the federal government. For the records, the story is untrue and sensational.
At no time did the governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, instructed that the rice, meant to assist the state to combat food insecurity, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, be rejected and returned to Abuja.
On receipt of the items, the Palliative Committee did a random physical inspection on the rice, and discovered that some appear unhealthy for consumption, at least on the face-value, while others look good.
The Committee indeed drew the attention of Mr. Governor to this and pleaded for proper guidance.
While awaiting the thoughts of Mr. Governor, the Committee members met and decided to carry out a comprehensive inspection, to ascertain how many bags have been affected on account of storage. We discovered that less than ten percent of the lot falls into this category, and subsequently separated the few bags.
It is therefore very embarrassing that newspapers will go to town that the State Government has rejected the Federal Government support. The state is rather deeply appreciative of the Federal Government for standing by it in this trying time, and very optimistic that the support will further cushion the effects of hunger on our people.
I want to urge journalists to be painstaking in their assignments, and always put their crave for scoop in check.
State Palliative Committee
27th April, 2020