Governors of the 36 States of the federation under the aegis of the Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF) have revealed the plan to revise the 2020 budgets in their respective States.
The NGF Chairman and Governor of Ekiti State, Dr Kayode Fayemi, in a communiqe issued at the end of the seventh COVID-19 Teleconference meeting, said the Secretariat of the forum would provide technical assistance to State governments to establish common macroeconomic assumptions that will help States prepare revised budgets for 2020.
Fayemi, who hinted that the decision was taken after the forum received update from the Governor of Edo State, Godwin Obaseki, who heads the Committee that liaises with development partners, said it was in response to the fiscal impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on States.
Governors voiced concern over the continued movement of people across States despite the enforcement of inter-State lockdowns across States.
They promised to collaborate with the Nigeria Police Force to provide increased security, as well as the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) and local government area (LGA) Chairmen in the States to strengthen security surveillance along State boarders.
State governments also promised to engage with their health workers to provide other incentives, including insurance cover or allowances as may be required in the light of rising cases of infections among health workers.
This was announced after the forum received a presentation from Dr. Francis Adedayo Faduyile, President of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), Sam Ohuabunwa, President of the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) and Comrade Abdulrafiu Adeniji, President, National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives (NANNM).
The governors assured the associations of their commitment to ensure that health workers who were in the frontlines of the epidemic are not left behind in the areas of welfare and safety.
The governors also expressed commitment to ensuring that personal protective equipment (PPE) are available in all general hospitals and health facilities.
Members of the forum also said that they are collaborating with the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) to provide training to health workers (including their capacity to use telemedicine) on infectious disease control and prevention and the use of PPE to stem the spread of the virus to health workers.
The Chairman also briefed the forum on coordination efforts with the federal government, multilateral and bilateral partners, and the private sector through the Coalition against COVID-19 (CACOVID).
Governors, therefore, thanked the private sector coalition for the provision of palliatives to households and testing facilities to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
Governors lauded Alhaji Aliko Dangote, President of the Dangote Group, who joined in the teleconference for his increasing involvement in the fight against COVID-19 in the country.
They promised to provide logistical support to ensure that palliatives get to the people who need them after an interactive session with Dangote.