President Buhari says measures won’t affect food, medical supplies

The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), said on Thursday that measures his regime had put in place to counter the coronavirus pandemic would not affect food supplies or deny the citizenry access to medical supplies and other basic needs.

He also advised against panicky reactions to the pandemic, assuring that the regime was doing everything possible to tackle it, according to a State House statement by his media aide, Mr Garba Shehu.

 Buhari commended the unity of purpose in fighting the spread of COVID-19 in the country, “particularly the willingness for self-isolation, social distancing and contributions of public-spirited individuals and institutions who consistently mobilised resources to supplement efforts of federal and state governments.”

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The Presidency said Buhari extolled state governments, religious bodies, health workers, Federal Government agencies, “including security outfits, National Centre for Disease Control and Manufacturers Association of Nigeria for rising to the occasion to protect the country and its citizens.”

He gave the assurance that the government would remain steadfast in deploying more resources to lessen the burden of the pandemic.

The President, who called for more compliance with regulations and restrictions on movement and gatherings for the safety of all citizens, further reassured that government directives would “not affect production and distribution of food, medications, medical equipment and other essentials as the nation wades through the global health challenge, which already portends dire economic strains.”

Buhari directed all relevant agencies and regulators to provide enabling environment for industries to sustain their operations by ensuring reasonable access to industrial supplies and inputs like water, fuel, gas and essential infrastructure.

He also called for the relaxing of stringent laws, “commending the Central Bank of Nigeria and commercial banks for the interventions to make forex and credit more accessible to those on the manufacturing line.”

The Presidency stated more, “In giving assurances of firm support for the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria by proactively addressing the potential impact of the pandemic on the Nigerian economy, the President requests that all necessary measures be put in place to protect and promote the health and safety of industrial workers.

“President Buhari calls on all leaders across the country, including religious and traditional leaders, to further support the federal and state governments in the ongoing sensitisation programmes on the need to stay at home and keep a safe distance in the public, and to dissuade citizens from panic buying and rumour mongering.” Punch

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