By Modupe Gbadeyanka
Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) for Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) in Nigeria, Mr Boss Mustapha, has asked farmers in the country to prepare to return to their farms very soon.
The PTF Chair, speaking during the daily press briefing on Friday in Abuja, stated that this became necessary to avert food crisis in the country at a time the nation was battling with health and economic crisis.
According to him, the federal government, through the ministry of Agriculture, will make adequate arrangements to make things go smoothly for farmer.
He said Nigeria must take full advantage of the forthcoming planting season to increase the food bank of the nation.
“I also wish to use this opportunity to restate that food security and self-sufficiency remain important to our national life.
“I therefore, urge all our farmers to begin to prepare for their return to the farms as the planting season.
“The Federal Ministry of Agriculture has put in place arrangements for access to farm inputs, extension and others services,” Mr Mustapha said.
The PTF boss, who doubles as Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), used the occasion to announce the signing of a deal to provide life insurance to about 5,000 health workers assisting in the fight against coronavirus pandemic.
“I am, however, pleased to inform you that, in addition to what the Federal Government is doing, the insurance industry has responded massively to the call for support.
“The PTF has received the life insurance cover to the frontline workers on COVID-19 for a maximum of 5,000 health workers who are employed to fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The premium in the sum of N112,500,000 for the cover has been fully paid by the Nigerian insurance industry in line with the principle of no premium, no cover,” he said.
Concluding his speech, Mr Mustapha further appealed to “all Nigerians to continue to comply with the advisories,” saying, “These are still the most efficient measures that can help us manage the ravaging virus.”