The Lagos State Government has urged shoppers at its 27 designated COVID-19 Emergency Food Markets to always observe social distancing and regular handwashing to contain spread of the virus.
The State Commissioner for Agriculture, Mr Gbolahan Lawal, spoke while monitoring the Easter edition of the market at Fagba Junior High School, Iju-Ishaga; Meiran Community Primary School, Meiran and Papa Ajao Nursery and Primary School, Mushin in Lagos.
Lawal was represented by Dr Olayiwole Onasanya, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture.
The commissioner said that the state government had made provision for soap and water as well as hand sanitisers in all the 27 designated markets.
He said people must observe the rules and regulations laid down by the government to curtail the spread of the COVID-19 as they shop for their foods and daily needs.
“I am impressed with what we have seen so far in all the markets we visited today. We have gone to about three markets so far, and what we have seen is that people were well mobilised.
“We are emphasising on social distancing, washing of hands before entering into the markets, and also on your way out, we have provided hand sanitisers, soap and water.
“I am impressed with today’s turnout; although, it is a temporary emergency market that is closer to the people to buy food items during the lockdown.
“The experience has been good; people are coming from their houses to shop for items like fruits, vegetables, yam, rice, bean, garri, pepper, oil, drinks, meat, fish as well as live and frozen chicken.
“What we have observed between the buyers and the sellers is that social distancing is observed,” he said.
Lawal said the state government was committed to improving the lives of Lagosians through various palliative measures to ameliorate their sufferings during the period of lockdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
He said that the markets had been setup in neighbourhood for easy access to reduce the stress and enable people to restock.
NAN observed that residents trooped out of their various homes to the 27 COVID-19 Emergency Food Markets to make last minutes purchase ahead of the Easter celebration.
Some of the residents commended the state government’s initiative, describing it “as a well thought-out”.
A resident, Mrs Ladi Sanni, a Hairdresser, commended the state government for setting up the emergency food markets during the lock down.
Sanni said the market had saved her the stress of travelling long distance to shop for her daily needs.
“I am very happy with the emergency market; it is cheap and affordable.
“It has reduced the stress of having to look for where to shop for food items during the lockdown.
“This morning, it took me less than five minutes to reach the market closer to my house, and I was able to get almost all the items needed for the low key Easter celebration.
“I thank Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu for this noble idea,” she said.
Also, Mrs Patient Abiodun, a business woman, lauded the state government’s efforts at mitigating the burden of the lockdown with the market.
Abiodun said that the prices of food items were the same with Mile 12 and other wholesale markets within the state.
“I am happy that I can buy food items like rice, live chicken, pepper to celebrate Easter with my family during the lockdown.
“This market is of great relief to me because I do not have to travel long distance to get what I need, I am grateful to the government,” she said.
A Farmer, Mrs Bosun Sholarin, commended the state government for the opportunity provided for both farmers and shopper during the lockdown.
Sholarin said the sourcing for farm produce and transporting them to the emergency markets was a challenge due to the lock down.
He urged the state government to provide a window to enable farmers move their products to the emergency markets.
Edited By: Angela Okisor/Olagoke Olatoye
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