NGF meets today to reassess options out of COVID-19 effects

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    Governors’ Forum shuts down borders

    TWO weeks after it elected to shut the interstate borders, the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) will meet today to review the effect of its decisions and the situation of COVID-19 pandemic in various states.

    In a statement by the NGF Head, Media and Public Affairs, Abdulrazaque Bello-Barkindo, in Abuja, Tuesday, the Forum stated that it will deliberate and seek ways paths for a quick way out of the effects of the pandemic.

    According to the invitation sent from the Director-General of the Forum, Mr Asishana Bayo Okauru, the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC), Mr Mele Kyari, is expected to join the meeting scheduled to start by 2 p.m. to discuss the intervention and coordination efforts of the NNPC since the outbreak of the pandemic.

    Bello-Barkindo stated that issues to be discussed at the 8th teleconference meeting, include an update from the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19.

    He also listed a new initiative codenamed CACOVID-Volunteer Health Workers Support Scheme to States, including a consideration for a CACOVID– Healthcare Training Proposal, among others.

    According to him, “the state governors will also take a peek into the CACOVID distribution of palliatives and also receive a feedback from the states.

    “It is expected to get an update on the lockdown and see whether or not the palliatives have made any impact on the citizenry.

    “The governors will also discuss the NCDC Bill 2020, among other matters, apart from taking a critical look at the nation’s economic sustainability plan, and post COVID-19.”

    The Nigerian Governors Forum, the umbrella body of the 36 state governors, had laid the markers to halt the spread of the novel coronavirus by agreeing to shut interstate borders for the two weeks. 

    It was an decision that was supposed to lock down the entire country, and limit the spread of the coronavirus among the states, while making allowances for essential services, but it was hardly effective as the borders across the country remained porous.

    The major challenge outside the distribution of palliatives is perhaps the daily rise in the number of infected persons as the spread has entered community transmission. 

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