COVID-19: Buhari Restructures PTF, Extends Mandate To December
The new development comes as PTF submitted its report on a previous three-month extension of its mandate ended on March 31.
The chairman of PTF, Boss Mustapha, made this known at its weekly briefing on Tuesday, saying;
Following expiration of the extension on March 31, 2021 and a detailed review, the PTF submitted its report to Mr President for appropriate decisions.
The President has considered the report and has approved that the PTF will transition to a Presidential Steering Committee on COVID-19, effective from 1 April 2021, with a modified mandate to reflect the non-emergent status of COVID-19 as a potentially long-term pandemic.
PTF was established by President Buhari on March 9, 2020, to coordinate and oversee the country’s multi-sectoral inter-governmental efforts to contain the spread and mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in Nigeria.
The dissolved PTF team includes National Coordinator, Sani Aliyu, a former head of Nigeria’s AIDS agency (NACA), who has been absent from the weekly briefings in the past few weeks; the Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire; Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed; Minister of Environment, Muhammad Mahmood; Minister of State for Health, Olorunnimbe Mamora; Director-General of Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Chikwe Ihekweazu; and the National Incident Manager (NIM) PTF, Mukhtar Muhammad.
Mustapha expressed that;
The structure of the PSC shall reflect the new focus of the response with a targeted approach on vaccine oversight, risk communication, international travel quarantine processes and sub-national engagement; and that the tenure of the PSC shall last till 31 December 2021.
He added that PSC would maintain the present constitution, functions and strategies of the PTF; be supported by a slim technical and administrative structure.
Mustapha also said that the current National Incident Manager (Dr Mukhtar Mohammed) shall formally take over from National Coordinator, Dr. Sani Aliyu and function as the Head (Technical Secretariat) and member of the PSC.