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Manna from Sanwo-Olu!

By Funke Cole

In the pristine times, a legend had it that manna (or food, as we know it today) used to literally fall from the skies down to mother earth with many inhabitants eating to their fill.

Fast forward to the 21st century Nigeria, particularly Lagos State, that feat is being reenacted under Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, who has literally been raining manna on Lagosians from all corners of the Centre of Excellence in recent times, courtesy of the Oúnjẹ Eko initiative.

The food programme expected to run for five Sundays consecutively is an intervention to help citizens mitigate the after effects of the growing cost-push inflation, occasioned by the subsidy removal.

Primed to be one of the food security measures adopted by the state government, it has helped in no small measure to provide succour for Lagosians with poor purchasing power as it avails them the rare opportunity of buying staple foods at rock-bottom and discounted rates that is not readily available elsewhere or anywhere, as the case may be. For instance, a 5kg bag of rice sells for N5,325, while 1kg goes for N1,065; a 5kg bag of beans is N6,225 while 1kg was sold at N1,245.

Since its flag-off a week ago, there have been interesting outcomes from all the different touch points, where happy-go-lucky-Lagosians have been experiencing fulfilled-fun-filled moments.

From the east, west, central part of Lagos metropolis and its environs, using the local government areas, what resonates with the citizens and permeates everywhere is the fact that staple foods, which had almost become priced out of the reach of the ordinary Lagosian, is now readily available and affordable still.

The initiative has been lauded as uncompromisingly effective, especially with the use of card for purchase of items.

Food items such as beans, bread, rice, pepper etc were readily made available for sale at discounted prices to the residents who visited the locations.

With touch points and sales outlets spread across different parts of the state, including 27 locations in Ikeja; six in Lagos Island; nine in Ikorodu; five in Epe; and 10 in Badagry divisions, Lagosians, according to Mrs. Aweda Alaka, have never had it so good for a long time.

According to her, these designated locations have been able to cater for a lot of people interested in purchasing these food items, especially helping them to avoid intentional exploitation by shylocks out there.

Alaka is one many beneficiaries who have seized the opportunity provided by this food bazaar to stock up during this period of food inflation.

Like her, Madam Mopelola Anjorin, another resident who has also explored the opportunity provided by this initiative, acknowledged the fact that the state government has been doing tremendously well with the initiative.

According to her, such initiative has been a game changer of some sorts and has the potential to positively impact on the price of food items on the long run.

Anjorin’s testament indeed speaks to the idea and ideals of the Oúnjẹ Eko initiative as conceptualised by the state government in its determined will to make life better for the good people of Lagos, whose mandate the Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu administration has promised to fulfill as part of his social contract.

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