The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) has resolved to take a mediatory role to resolve the ongoing strike by the Nigeria Association of Resident Doctors (NARD). The forum disclosed this in a communiqué issued by its Chairman and Governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, after its 33rd teleconference held on Wednesday.
The communique issued on Thursday said that the resolution followed an update by Dr. Ahmad Abdulwahab, the NGF Senior Health Advisor, regarding the ongoing strike.
It noted that the governors resolved to take a mediatory role to facilitate dialogue between NARD and the affected States.
It stated that the forum deliberated on several issues of national importance, including the strike.
According to the communique, the forum resolved to work with the Steering Committee, set up by President Muhammadu Buhari, to oversee the process of the implementation of the Petroleum Industry Bill recently signed into law.
It noted that the governors would work with the presidential committee, headed by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, on the areas of concern to the forum.
“A Committee for this purpose, Chaired by the Governor of Nasarawa, was constituted with the Governors of Abia, Ogun, Kwara, Akwa Ibom, Gombe and Kaduna states as members.
On COVID-19 Vaccine Administration, the Forum received an update on the second phase of the COVID-19 vaccine roll-out for the country from the Executive Director/Chief Executive Officer of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Dr. Faisal Shuaib.
It stated that Shuaibu informed members that 3,363 vaccination sites across the 36 States FCT have been designated for the rollout of the second phase of the COVID-19 vaccination.
“Members reiterated their commitment to providing leadership and oversight for the effective flag-off and implementation of the second phase of the vaccination exercise.”
The communique added that the governors resolved to take additional measures to curb the resurgence of the spread of the COVID-19 virus by working with the Presidential Steering Committee (PSC) to develop applicable guidelines.
It added that Abdulwahab briefed governors on the emerging cholera outbreak in the country which has so far affected 23 States, with over 47,000 cases recorded.
“State governors took a common position on a holistic approach to addressing Health security challenges by domesticating the National Action Plan for Health Security with the support from the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) to build core health security capacities in surveillance, laboratory network, emergency operations and workforce in all States.
“On the recent Federal High Court Judgment on Value Added Tax (VAT), the forum resolved not to make any pronouncements until all litigations regarding the matter are concluded.
“After a presentation by the Managing Director of the Rural Electrification Agency (REA), Ahmad Salihijo, on opportunities to strengthen collaboration between the Agency and States, the governors resolved that each State should nominate a focal person who will work with the REA to coordinate rural electrification projects in all States.
“This collaboration between States and the REA will target, among others, increase in energy access through new solar connections; and increased local content in off-grid solar value chains, including the assembly or manufacturing of components of off-grid solutions.”
It added that the governors were also updated on the States’ Fiscal Transparency, Accountability and Sustainability (SFTAS) Programme-for-Results (PforR).
The communique noted that the NGF SFTAS Senior Programme Manager, Mr. Olanrewaju Ajogbasile, provided updates on the upcoming deadlines for the achievement of Disbursement-Linked Results (DLRs) and others.
These, according to him, include the ongoing Annual Performance Assessment (APA) by the Independent Verification Agent (IVA).
He listed others to be the States’ debt reconciliation exercise being carried out in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning (FMBNP), the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), and the Debt Management Office (DMO).
It said the forum is committed to providing support and direction necessary to ensure the successful implementation of reforms recommended by the programme.
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