The Federal Executive Council, presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari, on Wednesday approved N654 million for the procurement and rehabilitation of COVID-19 screening machines at the nation’s airports.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, who stated this at the end of the meeting in Abuja, said the approval followed the presentation of a memo to the Council by the Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika.
Mohammed said: “The Minister of Aviation also presented a memo seeking approval for the rehabilitation of the various screening machines nationwide at the cost of N654 million.
“You would notice that with the incident of COVID-19 pandemic, a new protocol sanctioned by IATA and other Aviation authorities has now come into our airports, which entails more of social distancing.
“So, you need more points to screen passengers and their luggages.
“So this is what has necessitated for the rehabilitation of those screening machines that have broken down.”
The Minister also revealed that the Council approved N788 million as augmentation for the completion of the rehabilitation of the Abeokuta-Ibadan Road, bringing the total cost of the 72km road project to N4.78 billion.
Mohammed said: “Also on behalf of the Minister of Works and Housing, I want to report that his memo for the completion of the rehabilitation of the Abeokuta-Ibadan road, a distance of 72km was approved today.
“It was a memo asking for augmentation by N788 million to bring the project cost to N4.78 billion plus six months extension time for construction.
“So, we hope that by 2021, this road will be completed.
“You need to note also that this was a contract that was awarded in 2010 but due to paucity of funds and other constraints, we have to take it over.”
The Minister stated that N292.6 million was also approved by the Council for the purchase of 21 operational vehicles for the Federal Road Safety Corps.
According to Mohammed, the vehicles will enhance the operational capability and capacity of the Corps to stop the carnage on the nation roads and also secure the roads better.
He said: “The Secretary to the Government of the Federation on behalf of Mr. President also presented a memo seeking Council’s approval for the purchase of 21 operational vehicles for the Federal Road Safety Corps in total sum of N292,615 million.
“The purpose of the memo is to enhance the operational capability and capacity of the Corps so that we can stop the carnage on our roads and also secure our roads better.
“The unique thing about this memo is that these vehicles are being sourced from one of our local assemble plants, Peugeot Nigeria Limited in Kaduna.”
Mohammed also announced that the Council approved N183.7 million for the final design of engineering infrastructure and production of tendered documents for Kabusa District, Phase 3 of the Federal Capital Territory.
The Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, who also briefed on the outcome of the meeting, said the Council approved the full business skills compliance certificate issued by the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission, Abuja.
Aregbesola said the contract was for the design, finance, upgrade, operate, and transfer of the Nigeria Correctional Service Shoe, Garment and Leather Processing Factory located in Aba, Abia State as well as Janguza, Kano State under a Public Private Partnership.
According to him, the full business skills certificate will attract N5.1 billion investment, provide 1,330 and 3,000 direct and indirect job opportunities.
He said: “Invariably, when the partnership comes into effect, the benefit is enormous.
“About 1,330 people will have direct employment, while about 3,000 people will have indirect employment.
“The benefit beside the employment of Nigerians is the opportunity for training of the inmates of our correctional facilities in Janguza, Kano State and Aba in Abia.”