In a bid to ensure effective roll-out of COVID-19 vaccine across Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the transition of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 into the Presidential Steering Committee (PSC).
This was disclosed by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation and Chairman of the defunct PTF on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha, during a media briefing on Tuesday.
The Transition which took effect from April 1, 2021, will ensure the equitable and effective distribution of the vaccines as well as promote policies that would result in the development of the country’s health sector.
“President has considered the report and has approved the following: That the PTF will transition to a presidential steering committee on COVID-19, effective from 1st April 2021, with a modified mandate to reflect the non-emergent status of COVID-19 as a potentially long-term pandemic,” the SGF said
Also, the PSC structure will reflect the new focus of the response with a targeted approach on vaccine oversight, risk communication, international travel quarantine processes and sub-national engagement, Mustapha disclosed.
Recall that the PTF was set up by the president in 2020 to manage and strengthen the nation’s response strategy to the outbreak of COVID-19, particularly in the areas of testing, containment and management of the virus.
However, the SGF said the new structure will still be headed by him and will function till the end of 2021.
The PSC Chairman noted that Mukhtar Muhammad, who had functioned as National Incident Manager (NIM) of the PTF, will officially take over the office of the National Coordinator from Sani Aliyu, who had just returned to the United Kingdom (UK) to resume his private practice.
Speaking at the briefing, the SGF said the committee would continue to provide oversight of the nation’s response to the pandemic and support the goal to build Nigeria back and better.