The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has offered Mali 793 tons of cereals as part of the food and nutritional assistance to some of its member states affected by the coronavirus pandemic, PANA learned from an official source in Bamako, the Malian capital.
The official presentation ceremony of this donation took place on Monday in Bamako, under the chairmanship of the Minister of Malians residing Abroad and African Integration, Alhamdou Ag Ilyène.
Divided into two batches, the first consists of 237 tons of cereals, funded by the Humanitarian Emergencies Fund of the ECOWAS Commission for disaster relief for support to member states affected by a humanitarian emergency.
The second batch is made up of 556 tons financed by resources from the Food Security Stock Support Project in West Africa, financially supported by the European Union to the tune of 56 million euros, or 36.7 billion CFA francs.
These cereals, composed of 349 tons of rice, 172 tons of sorghum, 172 tons of millet and 100 tons of maize, will be taken from the stocks of the regional food security reserve, part of which is stored in the stores of the Office of food products from Mali (OPAM).
They will be distributed free of charge to the households most affected by the various crises in Mali, in particular the Covid-19 which has caused a disruption in the food supply chains of many ECOWAS countries, whose food imports represented a strategic tool for cover the needs of the populations.
Speaking at the ceremony, the Malian Minister, Alhamdou Ag Ilyène, recalled the creation since 2013 of the regional food security reserve by an additional act in order to provide an adequate response to the situation of food crisis resulting from recurring droughts and conflicts, while recognizing that “ECOWAS has always assisted Malians, whenever they make their request”. (PANA/NAN)