The Federal Government in collaboration with the World Food Programme, has launched a stabilisation fund in Jibia Local Government Area (LGA) of Katsina State in which no fewer than 1,398 vulnerable persons would benefit.
The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajiya Sadiya Umar Farouk, said that the project was part of the interventions by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to member states toward cushioning the effects of flooding and COVID-19 pandemic.
Farouk, who was represented at the event by the Director of Humanitarian Affairs, Alhaji Ali Grema, said the current phase of the project was being implemented in Jibia and Faskari LGAs.
According to her, for Nigeria, the ECOWAS intervention was being provided through the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development for two projects.
“First, the post-flood humanitarian assistance and second, the humanitarian stabilisation fund. These projects are being implemented by the Nigeria Red Cross Society (NRCS) and WFP on behalf of the Ministry,” she said.
In her address, the Programme officer ofWFP, Agnes Mungatia, said that WFP was collaborating with the Federal Government and ECOWAS in its programme on alleviating food and nutrition insecurity in Katsina, Borno, Adamawa and Zamfara States.
She said that the programme was also building sustainable livelihood for vulnerable families.
The programme officer said, “In Katsina, 208 households or 1,398 individual beneficiaries received cash transfers of N27, 800 every month in order to purchase their preferred food from local markets.
“Beneficiaries are usually encouraged to buy a wide range of nutritious local food items from the local markets supplied by local producers and that has an additional advantage of stimulating local markets and local agricultural production.”
Mungatia added that to prevent acute malnutrition in the first 1,000 days of their lives.
She added that the programme also was also meant to provide nutrition assistance to children between six months and 23 months and 4,690 children would benefit from it.
She said that the programme was also assisting pregnant and lactating mothers from vulnerable households, adding that 644 families would benefit in Faskari and Jibia LGAs of the state.
“In the last phase of the programme, WFP planned to use the ECOWAS donation to build the resilience of some of the households by providing milling machines and training support to 86 beneficiaries in order to generate income to support their livelihoods’’, she added.
Earlier, Gov. Aminu Masari of KAtsina State commended the Federal Government, ECOWAS and all the partners for the gesture.
Masari represented by his Special Adviser, Department of Empowerment and Social Intervention, Alhaji Abdulkadir Mamman-Nasir, promised to devise a mechanism to sustain the programme beyond its time frame in the state.
According to him, such will benefit more communities across the state.