The Nigeria Customs Service, Oyo and Osun Command, on Saturday said the 1,800 bags of rice released as a palliative to the Oyo State government are not infested with weevils and are good for human consumption.
This was in response to the claim by Oyo State Government that the bags of rice released to it by the command were infected and not good for human consumption.
An aide to Gov. Seyi Makinde on Agribusiness, Dr Debo Akande, had on Friday alleged that the rice given through the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and released by the Customs were infested with weevils.
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However, ASC1 Abdullah Lagos, the Command’s Public Relations Officer, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Ibadan that 6,000 bags of rice were given to Ekiti, Osun, Oyo and Ondo States.
He said that only Oyo State claimed that the 1,800 bags of rice released to it were infected and not good for consumption. Lagos said the claim by the Oyo State government was not fair and the command suspected foul play.
“Representatives of Oyo, Ekiti and Osun states were on the ground together with representatives of Humanitarian Affairs to inspect in our warehouse twice on Monday.
“Oyo State came to evacuate their rice on Tuesday and everybody was there. It was not as good as they claimed, all of us would have been able to see it right there.
“In the process of evacuating, some of the bags fell down and got torn and no weevil or any other insect came out of them.
“Oyo State even selected the ones they wanted themselves. Of all the states, which collected the rice, only Oyo State is saying all the 1,800 bags of rice given to them are infected.
“What we gave out are not infected and are fit for human consumption and we cannot give out infected rice,” he said.
Lagos said the command would not receive any infected rice from anybody who wanted to return it because it could not join the bad ones with the good ones in its warehouse.