The Association of River Gee Citizens in the Americas (RIGCAA) has donated 119 25kg bags of rice to fellow kinsmen residing in Montserrado County, particularly Clara Town, Monrovia.
Speaking to this paper in an exclusive interview during the formal handling over ceremony Thursday, May 7th, at the Dominion Christian Fellowship Church in Clara Town, the Country Representative of RIGCAA, Brisco P. Toe said, the decision came about thru the Association’s president, Mr. TeiyeeQuinin and other members residing in Atlanta, Georgia, the United States, who decided to identify with River Gee citizens back home in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The donation is prompted by this virus, and our citizens in the United States decided to give back to the most vulnerable citizens of River Gee that are basing in Montserrado. We believe these 119 bags given to our people will restore their hope, while they are staying home under the State of Emergency”, Mr. Toe said.
He added that the focus for now is on Montserrado, because it’s has been the hot zone for the virus, but disclosed second phase of the donation will go directly to the county to identify with fellow kinsmen there.
He explained that generally, citizens of River Gee County in Montserrado are expected to benefit from this gesture, but special priorities would go to widows, physically-challenged people, old folks and others who don’t have the means of getting their own food.
“We want to urge our citizens to remain in door, and observe the health protocols, and to our colleagues who continue to mix this with politics to refrain from politicizing this, Ebola came and passed; this too shall pass.”
Receiving the donation on behalf of the River Gee Citizens, Elder Jackson C. Nyepan, extolled the leadership of RIGCAA for identifying with them at this critical time.
He said the donation is a clear manifestation that kinsmen abroad have them at heart, and “we highly appreciate them for coming to our aid.”
We can’t see them nor talk to them but as their direct representative, we want you to extend our heartfelt gratitude to them, you could have chosen not to bring this donation to us but you did and we also appreciate you”, Elder Nyepan noted.
He said in the ongoing fight, the hardest thing is food, because no one can fight with an empty stomach. “We further want to assure you that this donation will reach the most needed persons especially, those that are targeted.”
For her part, the speaker of the River Gee Women in Clara Town, Ms. Ruth Bodiah expressed joy for the donation, and thanked RIGCAA through its Country Representative for keeping them in mind, saying, “We are grateful to our children; it’s our prayers that God will restore whatever they have given us.”
The donation comes at a time the government here is contemplating food distribution to 2 Million vulnerable households, particularly in the four affected counties – Montserrado, Margibi. Nimba and Grand Kru, respectively.
The planned distribution is the result of a US$25 Million stimulus package announced recently by President George Manneh Weah and approved by the 54th Liberian Legislature in the wake of a 60 days State of Emergency and nearly one month lackdown. But there is outcry among the entire 4.5 million population for the food to benefit all 15 counties.
As of 6:58 AM, May 07, Liberia has a total confirmed cases of 186, 20 deaths and 92 recoveries, according statistics from the National Public Health Institute of Liberia, NPHIL.
By Lewis S. Teh –Editing by Jonathan Browne