……….Governors commend FG’s support to States’ COVID-19 response capacity
As part of measures adopted to consolidate efforts aimed at containing the security situation in the country, the Federal Government has approved the sum of N13.3 billion for the take-off of Community Policing initiative across the country.
Accordingly, the National Economic Council (NEC) at its virtual meeting on Thursday (the 6th in 2020), chaired by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, with state governors, FCT Minister, CBN Governor and some federal cabinet officials in attendance, resolved that the Chairman of the Nigerian Governors Forum, with two other governors, meet with the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, the Finance Minister and the Inspector General of Police to coordinate the proper utilization of the funding of the initiative.
The National Economic Council (NEC) Ad-hoc Committee on Security and Policing, had made a presentation on its assignment to the Council noting that engagement with key stakeholders on the operationalization of community policing in the country was in ongoing. The presentation was made by Governor Kayode Fayemi, who is also the Chairman, Nigeria Governors Forum.
Other reports received by Council at today’s meeting included reports on the COVID-19 pandemic situation in the country; flood disaster risk management in Nigeria for 2020, and the issue of compensation payments regarding Federal Highway projects across the country.
Responding to two presentations on the situation of the COVID-19 pandemic in Nigeria: one by NEC’s Adhoc committee interfacing with the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, and the other by Nigerian Centre for Disease Control, the State governors commended the efforts and commitment of the Federal Government in containing the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic and supporting States’ response capacity through various interventions.
The NCDC report indicates that the positivity rate has fallen from 19.7% in June to 13.7% in August 2020, while number of states with testing laboratories increased from 2 to 32, including the FCT.
According to the status report presented to the council, “the average tests per day has risen from 500 at the onset of the outbreak to 3,500 today, while the daily laboratory testing capacity increased to 10,000.”
Council also received recommendations from the Adhoc committee some of which include:
• The states and FCT to look for ways of upscaling the communication at the grass-root level/ non-compliance to non-pharmaceutical interventions.
• The need for states and FCT to explore the suggested use of local networks and traditional institutions such as Association of Local Government of Nigeria (ALGON) to re-orient the people at the grassroots who had continuously lived in denial of the pandemic but rather chose to display nonchalant attitude towards all the laid down protocols.
• States and FCT should engage the services of the respected community influencers such as the heads of “Area Boys”, market women, and villagers, in disseminating the same message to the grass root using different modes/media that are common to such people and could easily attract their attention.
Other highlights of the meeting are as follows:
The Honourable Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning reported to Council that the under listed accounts as at 18th August 2020 were as follows:
i. EXCESS CRUDE ACCOUNT (ECA)
Balance as at 18th August 2020 = $72,408,119.44
ii. STABILIZATION FUND ACCOUNT
Balance as at 18th August 2020 = N44, 207, 377,110.34
iii. NATURAL RESOURCES DEVELOPMENT FUND ACCOUNT
Balance as at18th August 2020 = N144, 047, 195, 020.54
UPDATE BY THE NATIONAL ECONOMIC COUNCIL AD-HOC COMMITTEE ON SECURITY AND POLICING PRESENTED TO NATIONAL ECONOMIC COUNCIL (NEC)
Council received a presentation from Chairman National Economic Council Ad- Hoc Committee on Security and Policing.
Earlier, at the 95th National Economic council meeting, held on Thursday 20th June 2019, the National Security Adviser made a presentation on the security situation in the country.
Council had then deliberated extensively on the persistent security situation in the country especially the activities of Boko Haram insurgents in the North East, which had remained a delicate challenge.
Based on these, Council set up an Ad-Hoc Committee on security and policing headed by the Governor of Ekiti state.
The presentation to the Council today informed that the work of the Committee is ongoing with key stakeholders. Accordingly, the Committee would be meeting further as the need arises to update the Council on the progress being made to address insecurity and criminality in the country.
Council was informed that the President has approved a sum of N13.3B for the takeoff of Community Policing in the country. The VP then asked that a small team comprising of the NGF Chair, 2 additional Governors, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Finance Minister and the Inspector General of Police should meet to ensure that the FG funding is well utilized. A report would then be made back to the Council.
FLOOD DISASTER RISK MANAGEMENT IN NIGERIA FOR 2020
Council received a presentation from the Hon Minister Sadiya Umar Farouq, Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development on flood disaster risk management in Nigeria for 2020.
Global Disaster Statistics
According to the presentation, Global data indicates that in the last decades, natural hazards occurred more frequently than in the past and were more destructive. Weather related hazards continue to increase from an annual average of 200 per year between 1993-1997, to 331 per year between 1996-2002.
The presentation stated that study already revealed that 25% of the world’s landmass and nearly 75% of its population is at risk
According to the Post Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA) conducted in Nigeria in 2012, flooding is considered the most common and recurring disaster in Nigeria by the National Emergency Management Agency. And this is a trend likely to continue.
Floods have been identified to affect more people and cause more economic losses than any other hazard, (Wisner et al, 2004).
The Minister then urged States
*To encourage relevant Federal Ministries, Department and Agencies to take necessary actions in support of the process
*Respectfully requested States to kindly take proactive and necessary mitigative measures in addressing the envisaged 2020 flood disaster even in the midst of COVID 19 pandemic.