In our quest to consolidate the relationship between the state legislators and their constituencies, JDPC AWKA Catholic Diocese, through its project, COMMUNITY LEGISLATIVE MEMBERS INTERACTIVE PLATFORM – CLIP, embarked on a fact finding mission in different communities within Awka Diocece to find out how palliatives were shared during the lockdown occasioned by the covid 19 pandemic.

The constituencies visited as at the time of this report were AWKA NORTH, ORUMBA SOUTH,NJIKOKA 2, ANAOCHA 2 and AGUATA 1 while we keep making plans to continue the visit to other constituencies within the Awka Diocese.

During these visits, the project team led by the Project Officer Nelson Nwaenyi , assited by Innocent Mgbolu and with blessings of the Executive Director JDPC AWKA, Rev. Fr. Levi Ukor, visited  various constituencies and conducted various town hall meetings with the different communities  to ascertain the performance of the state government , individuals, state legislators and traditional rulers as regards to the sharing of palliatives during the lockdown.

While engaging the communities at the town hall meetings , we discovered that some citizens frowned at the method of sharing the palliatives, although expressed their satisfaction with the idea of remembering  the aged and the youths specifically. They also advised that the gift items be increased in order for it to go round effectively.

President generals of the various communities visited also read out long lists of wealthy individuals who supported the communities with lots of food items. They also commended various town unions and  organizations  in Lagos, America, Europe and other places.

In the midst of all these, the traditional leaders also received praises from their citizens. They applauded Igwes for the timely interventions and the manner at which palliatives were shared in an orderly manner. They were also applauded for their consistency  in passing messages across town in terms of observing the covid 19 protocols.

Indeed, the last has not been heard about the key stakeholders who played a vital role to keep their communities  safe and happy by sharing palliatives.  The state house of assembly members also played a major role during the lockdown. Some of them started with the distribution of medical support items before they proceeded with sharing food items in different phases.

Some of the names mentioned at places visited as at the time of this report were,  Hon. John Nwokoye of Awka north, Hon. Emma Nwafor of Orumba South, Hon. Pete Ibida of Njikoka 2, Hon. Cater Dike of Aguata 2 and Hon. Ejike Okechukwu of Anaocha 2.

Generally speaking, the essence of these visits and town hall meetings is to clear our curiosity on how different state assembly legislators relate with their constituents as demanded by the CLIP project funded by CATHOLIC AGENCY FOR OVERSEA DEVELOPMENT- CAFOD with support from CATHOLIC CARITAS FOUNDATION OF NIGERIA –CCFN.

Lessons learnt so far during the visits and the town hall meetings is that the government should be more organized and sincere in sharing palliatives, they should be shared to those poorest of the poor and those who are vulnerable, not party members, friends and associates.

We also commend the idea of involving  traditional leaders in sharing palliatives. Legislators who represent their constituencies in the state house of assembly should always show love to those they represent and stand with them in difficult times.



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