By Isiyaku Ahmed, Kano
Lafiya is a seven years United Kingdom Program that supports health in Nigeria, it is being implemented in Abuja, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Yobe and Borno States to save lives, reduce suffering and improve economic prospects for the poorest and most vulnerable in Nigeria through encouraging government to increase resources invested in the health sector.
Recently, the Lafiya Program with support from Kano State Task Force on Covid-19 Response gave out 22800 face masks to Civil Society Organizations – CSOs in Kano to distribute to citizens in their project locations across Kano State; the face masks were produce by Kano State Government.
Dr Dayyabu Mahmoud Yusuf is the State Team Leader for DFID, Lafiya Funded Program in Kano, he said his organization conducted a covid-19 sensitization for over 138 CSOs and Kano State Government donated 22800 face masks for distribution to communities through CSOs.
For the purposes of transparency and accountability, he said a WhatsApp group was created; it was agreed that each CSO will share evidence of distributions including reports, pictures and names of locations where they carried out the distribution exercise.
Dr. Dayyabu said over 90% of CSOs did a wonderful work in their host communities by way of sensitization and distribution of the face masks, unfortunately, only 36 CSOs shared their reports with his team to transmit to the state government.
Worried about the 102 unreported situation, Lafiya Program and the Risk Communication Pillar of Kano State Covid-19 Response Team convened a review meeting for mostly those that did not share their report to understand what happened. In the meeting, it was realized that even the 64 did excellent, they used their resources for sensations but did not report back to Lafiya team but presented their report with means of verification including attendance sheets, reports and pictorial evidences during the review meeting.
He said the distribution is completed across the CSOs. His team will soon report to the state government containing beneficiaries and their locations. It is important to share their report with government because any resource channeled through CSOs gets to the poorest of the poor in the community, he added.
Umar Saleh Anka is representing Follow Taxes in Bebeji Local Government Area, he said they received 200 face masks and they have documented report with pictorial evidence of their random distribution to farmers, tea vendors, rugga residents in Bebji, Kiru and some areas of Garun Malam LGA.
Another CSO that was involved in the distribution of the face masks is the Grassroot Health Organization of Nigeria – (GHON). Dr Nura Haladu is its Senior Program Officer, he said GHON organized series of covid-19 sensitization for youths using the “each-one, teach one approach” in Kano Municipal, Kumbotso, Gwale and Nassarawa LGAs; distributed 200 face masks and submitted updated reports with pictorial evidences to the Lafiya Team.
Bilkisu Ado Zango is the Chairperson, Nigeria Association of Women Journalists (NAWOJ) and Northwest Coordinator of People Living with Physical Disability (PLWPD), she said her group distributed face masks to Kano Initiative of Persons with Special Needs (KIPS), the National Association of the Blind (NAB), Muslim Association of Visually Impaired of Nigeria (MAVIN), and Tundun Maliki Old Boys Association for onward distribution to their members.
She said PLWPD submitted documented activity reports and other evidences on the distribution of face masks to help curb the spread of covid-19 in Kano State to Lafiya Team.