Allegation of food diversion rocks Bayelsa relief camps

Allegation of food diversion rocks Bayelsa relief camps

Alleged diversion of food items by officials of the flood response committee in Bayelsa state is rocking the various relief camps accommodating internally displaced persons.

It was learnt that some government officials are allegedly diverting food stuffs such as garri, rice, and beans.

Aggrieved displaced persons squatting at the Bishop Dimieri Grammar School(BDGS) and Samson Siasia Sports Complex had planned to stage a protest on the streets of Yenagoa, to register their displeasure on the alleged diversion of food items in the camps, but they were pacified by some politicians and security men.

The diversion has caused severe food shortage in the camps. Some displaced people eat just once a day. .

A 75 year old victim at the BDGS camp, Fine Douye, told our correspondent that she had not eaten for past three days.

”I have not eaten food for three days. I’m hungry; government officials are diverting foodstuffs in our camp. I”m looking for elsewhere to stay before I will die here. Our experience here is terrible.”

Another displaced person, Ebi Alamene, regretted that the people now buy food from vendors in the camp, because the camp officials hardly cook for them owing to lack of food in the area.

Mr Alamene wondered why government officials should be diverting food stuffs meant for suffering persons. He said clerics who came to organize church services last Sunday were chased away.

“How can we be worshiping God when we are dying of starvation? People are suffering in the camps.I’m tired of the situation because the government officials in charge of distribution of food are not sincere to themselves and us. It’s only God that will judge them,” he said

A mother of four and inmate at the camp, Mrs. Sarah Omie, said her children are falling sick owing to hunger in the camp, she advised the officials to have a change of attitude.

In a reaction, State Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Markson Fefegha, admitted the lapses recorded in the distribution of food items in the various camp.

Fefegha, a member of the food distribution committee, said efforts are being made to redouble their efforts to ensure food gets to every camp soonest

A top government official and member of the food distribution committee, who pleaded anonymity denied allegation of the alleged diversion and described it as a blackmail to the committee