President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the formation of an Economic Sustainability Committee with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo as the chair of the committee.
The secretary to the government of the federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, made the announcement on Monday, March 30, 2020 in Abuja.
The aim of the committee is to develop measures to cushion the effect of Covid-19 pandemic on the Nigerian economy. The committee chaired by Yemi Osinbajo also has the responsibility of implementing strategies to alleviate the sufferings of Nigerians as the pandemic rages on.
In addition to palliative measures, the committee will also develop a sustainable plan on re-positioning the economy and growing the non-oil sector.
Apart from Vice President Osinbajo, other members of the committee include, Minister of finance, Budget and National planning, industry trade and investment, labour and productivity, Petroleum resources, Governor of the central bank of Nigeria and the Group managing director of the NNPC.
Mustapha, Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, spoke at the first joint briefing with the new committee. Meanwhile, Buhari had approved the procurement of resources to fight COVID-19. Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, made the disclosure at the the daily PTF press conference. He said the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) had also been empowered to expand its capacity to test for COVID-19.
“The NCDC is working round the clock to improve turn-around time for testing in all our six molecular laboratories. “We aim to scale up to 13 labs in next three weeks. In progress- Abakaliki, Maiduguri, Kano, Sokoto, Port-Harcourt, Jos and Kaduna States,” he said.
The minister told Nigerians that testing for the virus is free of charge. The country has recorded two deaths from coronavirus and over 100 cases recorded.