Artisans in their hundreds, on Thursday, took to the streets of Akure, the Ondo State capital, to a protest against the alleged diversion of the COVID-19 Survival Funds meant for them in the state, Punch reports.
The protesters were said to have specifically accused the Chairman of the Ondo State Micro-Credit Agency, Mrs Kosemani Kolawole, who is said to be the coordinator of the survival fund in the state, of inserting the names of her church members as artisans into the list of beneficiaries, alleging that only a few of their 4,500 members received alerts of N30,000.
One of the protesters, Mr Onile Adams, said they were worried how the funds were released to some artisans, while others did not get anything, hence the protest. He said, “We have over 97 associations and we expect each association to get up to 60 per cent of what was sent to them. We did all we were asked to do. We had several meetings and submitted many forms. There was no reason to do online registration.
“What we now heard was that enumeration was done inside the church and other people that are not artisans enumerated. About 4,500 artisans were supposed to get the alert but we didn’t receive any alert.”
Another artisan, Mr Oni Olaniran, said they were protesting because they were marginalised in the disbursement of the fund.
Mrs. Kolawole, however denied diverting anything to her church members as the artisans alleged. She said, “We are not paying money to artisans. It is the Federal Government that is paying. Monies are being paid directly to those enumerated.”