President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday set up a Presidential Task Force to spearhead the campaign against the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Nigeria.
The task force, headed by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, was in response to the potential effects of the pandemic on healthcare services in the country and the economy.
A statement by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu, said the task force would coordinate multi-sectoral actions in the event of an escalated outbreak.
The committee’s members are Dr Sani Aliyu, the National Coordinator; the Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire; the Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola; the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika; the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Services, Hajiya Sadiya Farouk.
The Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu; the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed; the Minister of Environment, Mohammed Mahmoud; the Director-General, State Services, Yusuf Bichi; the Director-General, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Chikwe Ihekwazu, and World Health Organisation (WHO) Country Representative are also members..
The statement reads: “Given the current global outbreak of the novel Coronavirus and its potential of causing significant disruption to health services in the country as well as impacting negatively on the economy, President Muhammadu Buhari has established a Presidential Task Force for the Control of the Coronavirus (Covid-19).
“This action is in preparation for the unlikely but probable major outbreak of the disease in the country which will require a multi-sectoral inter-governmental approach as advised by WHO similar to that adopted for the HIV epidemic in the last two decades.
“The start and finish task group is expected to deliver within a maximum of six months.”