The Federal Government is to co-opt some state governors in the implementation of the recently approved post-COVID-19 N2.3 trillion stimulus programme.
The Vice-President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo (SAN) disclosed this on Thursday while presiding over a virtual meeting of the National Economic Council at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Some governors had made a presentation at the NEC on how the states can collaborate effectively with the Federal Government in the implementation of the programme.
According to the Vice-President, two governors will be co-opted to join the Committee for the implementation phase of the plan.
Osinbajo said state governments would also be actively involved in the execution of the projects especially projects that are in the respective states in collaboration with other stakeholders and partners.
President Muhammadu Buhari while receiving the report of the Economic Sustainability Committee described it as a National Plan which has gone through wide consultations.
The presentation and media briefings are some of the highlights of the 105th meeting of the National Economic Council (NEC) chaired by the Vice-President with some governors, ministers and heads of Ministries, Department and Agency (MDAs) including the CBN Governor and the Group Managing Director of the NNPC in attendance.
Briefing journalists at the end of the meeting, the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, also presented the 2021 to 2023 Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF) by the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning.
Ahmed announced that the country’s Excess Crude Account (ECA) has hit $72.4 billion while the Stabilization Account has as at July 7, 2020 about N40.3 billion.
According to her, Natural Resources Development Fund Account balance now stands N131.5 billion.
Kaduna State Governor, Mallam Nasir El-rufai, who is also the Chairman of the NGF Ad hoc Committee on the collaborative implementation of the NESP, commended the Osinbajo-led ESC for a job well done and assured that governors were committed to the successful implementation of the plan.
“In agriculture, each state is to make available 20 hectares of land for cultivation and with the contribution of lands from States, he added that governors will appreciate land clearance as an incentive.
“In mass housing, NEC welcomes the plan to build 300,000 housing units across the country with an average of ten thousand homes per State,” he said in a statement by Mr Laolu Akande, the
Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity,
Office of the Vic-President and made available to Persecondnews.
El-rufai also called for a nationwide mortgage system to support the plan.
Also briefing journalists on the recommendations of the interim report of the NEC adhoc committee interfacing with the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 to ease the lockdown, the Committee Chairman and Delta State Governor, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa said the committee recommended that the Minister of Health should ensure provision of essential health services to save lives.
“The Presidential Task Force (PTF) should provide the operating guidelines to the States to enable them domesticate same given their peculiarities, norms and traditions, especially in opening of markets, religious places and schools etc.
On the proposed health workers allowance including hazard allowance by the Federal Ministry of Health, Okowa said it should not be imposed on the states, suggesting that each state should be allowed to negotiate with its health workers based on its ability to pay.
He said the committee recommended that there should be rapid testing, tracing, isolation and treatment, adding tha the NCDC and PTF should provide states with laboratory testing facilities and ensure effective sample collection.