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#COVID19: Virus Testing Capacity To Increase Across Local Councils – NGF

 

The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) has unanimously adopted a resolution to increase COVID-19 testing across all local governments so as to prevent a second wave of the pandemic in Nigeria.

This was made known in a communiqué issued in Abuja on Thursday after its 21st teleconference meeting.

The test was necessary following imported cases of COVID-19 from abroad, Nigeria Governors said

NGF Chairman, Gov. Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State signed the communiqué stating that deliberations on issues affecting Nigeria, particularly the impacts of the COVID-19 and the fallouts of the ENDSARS protests ensued between the Governors.

Similarly, the Chairman, NGF Sub-Committee, Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State, interfacing with the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 was making the appeal while updating the governors at the virtual meeting.

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Okowa raised concerns about the currently low testing numbers in the country especially in the light of the resurgence of COVID-19 cases globally.

According to the communiqué, the governors resolved to adopt both the state and regional levels guidelines to be developed and issued by the National Economic Council Sub-Committee on Engagement to reduce restiveness among youths.

Adding that it was clear that agitations were attributable to social and economic inequality in the country.

“The NEC Sub-Committee is mandated to engage with youths, civil society organizations, religious, political and traditional leaders with the objective of framing a new security and stability architecture for the country”.

They also agreed to engage stakeholders to drive a common agenda and generate the required support for security personnel who played vital role in ensuring the safety and wellbeing of citizens.

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“The governors commended CACOVID for presenting the true situation of what transpired in the light of the unfortunate misperception that attended the distribution of palliatives at the state level.

“They resolved that the NGF Chair should work with the Coalition Against COVID-19 (CACOVID) Chairperson to address the media in addition to members speaking up in their local settings.

“The governors agreed to educate the citizenry about the various palliatives provided by the states including cash transfers, food items, medical supplies, and tax incentives given to individual taxpayers and businesses.’’

According to the communiqué, the Governor of Edo State, Mr Godwin Obaseki provided an update on the status of the World Bank’s State Fiscal Transparency, Accountability and Sustainability (SFTAS) programme.

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“The governors Unanimously agreed to direct their commissioners of finance to sign the SFTAS subsidiary grant agreements with the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning to give effect to the principles and objectives of the program in their states.’’

Also adding that assessment of states’ amended budgets published at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic had been completed while the verification for the implementation of tax relief programmes in all states was underway.

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