The Bank of Ghana has made available GH¢25 million to support government’s efforts to cater for 400,000 vulnerable people who are struggling to feed themselves and their families during the 14-days partial lockdown of Greater Accra and Greater Kumasi.
The move, which is said to be facilitated by the VicePresident, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, forms part of governments Coronavirus Alleviation Programme (CAP). This was made known by the Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah at a press briefing on Ghana’s COVID-19 management status.
“The office of the Vice President has also been instrumental in getting the Bank of Ghana to provide about GH¢25 million to support the exercise to provide food for the vulnerable and the homeless at this point in time,” the minister said at the briefing.
The distribution of the food is being coordinated by the Office of the Vice President and executed by the Ministries of Gender, Children and Social Protection and Local Government and Rural Development, and the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO), as well as the National Security and Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies in the communities experiencing the lockdown.
Food distribution modalities
Speaking at the briefing the Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Cynthia Morrison said that, the decision to settle on the feeding of 400,000 vulnerable people was extracted from data that was provided by the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO).
“NADMO gave us a figure of 8 million affected people. Out of the 8 million, we divided and chose 5 percent which gave us the number 400,000,” Mrs. Morison said. Out of the figure, Greater Accra has 250,000 people while 150,000 are in Kasoa and Greater Kumasi.
She added that the distribution of the food has been mapped from electoral areas down to the constituency and district and the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs) have been roped into chain to help in identifying the needy in all communities. Faith based institutions such as churches are also helping to distribute food.
While some communities are getting hot meals, others are receiving food supplies including, rice, maize, gari, sugar and oil. The ministry says it will be roping in some porridge and kenkey sellers in some communities to supply food to 500 people in various localities daily.
“We are not only looking at the Kayayes. We are looking at the ghettos and slums. The debate has been over Kayayes but we are taking care of the vulnerable in the society and not only Kayayes. The physically challenged, the shoe shine boy, the mokola woman who sells shoes, bags and cutlery at the market and out of what she sells a day she is able to take care of her family; now that she is not going to work, who cooks for her, who gives her the money,” The minister explained.
She further stressed on the fact that government will not be giving out stipends to any vulnerable group but will provide cooked and uncooked food to support individuals and families.