Minister Sadiya Umar Faruq Convenes Zero Hunger Initiative Private Sector Roundtable To Address COVID-19 Pandemic Impact On Vulnerable Communities

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The Honourable Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Umar Farouk met with leaders in the business and development sector in Lagos at the weekend to align private and public sector priorities and coordinate activities of intervention towards alleviating the many problems affecting the poor and vulnerable across the nation.

The roundtable aims at rallying stakeholders’ support to boost efforts of the federal government in addressing the myriad of challenges emanating from the global COVID-19 pandemic.

The Minister impressed upon guests the importance of “re-imagining our approaches to solving new and older challenges in the wake of the pandemic”.

She also assured that the meeting will lead to a “renewed vigour in ongoing efforts to find better ways to collaborate as we help those most vulnerable in society.

“In our capacity at the federal level, we have been working diligently to address the problems across Nigeria. While our results are significant, collective action between the government and private sector organisations can have a greater impact.”

The Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme in Nigeria Mohammed in his welcome address, emphasized the importance of collaboration and partnership in development. He noted that public-private partnership has been instrumental in the projects the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has successfully executed in Nigeria.

Bankole ‘BankyW’ Wellington, the founder of Lekki Food Bank and Banky Wellington Foundation also noted at the round table that “it is important to identify community leaders when doing interventions in the society”. He also stated that his desire is for Nigeria to have a food bank in each community.

Attendees at the roundtable resolved to better align their efforts with those of the federal government of Nigeria towards cushioning the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Nigerians, especially regarding the increasing number of people at risk of  hunger, with inadequate access to health and educational facilities.

 The cross-sector roundtable had in attendance Mohammed Yahya, Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme in Nigeria, Abubakar Sulieman, Managing Director of Sterling Bank, Alero Ayida-Otobo of Project Ark, Onyeka Akumah of Farmcrowdy, Alan Sinfield, CEO of 9 mobile, Bankole Wellington, Senior Special Assistant to the President on the Sustainable Development Goals among many others.

NNEKA IKEM ANIBEZE

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