The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), has heeded the call of Manufacturetes Association of Nigeria (MAN) to allow unhindered, activities of producers, suppliers and distributors of essential goods and services during the period.
The decision of the forum was the outcome of consistent calls by the Association with relevant government stakeholders on the survival and sustenance of livelihood of Nigerians through the operation of critical manufacturing sector.
Commending the NGF for its positive response, president of MAN, Mansur Ahmed, who made the disclosure, said he was impressed by the move of the Forum to take heed to the call by manufacturers of essential products at a time like this.
He noted that the food, beverage, pharmaceutical and other complementing sectors that make the value chain of essential products available are very critical and the Association was glad that government recognised this critical role in its directive on a 14-day lockdown.
Accordingly, the Governors’ Forum noted that the whole value chain from farmer to suppliers of raw materials from manufacturers to suppliers of raw and packaging materials (flexible and corrugated), service providers (logistic companies), transporters should continue with their lawful operations, unhindered by officials and agents of state government.
The letter of authority signed by Dr John Kayode Fayemi, Governor and chairman of NGF, instructed that all parastatals and agencies of the 36 states of the federation have therefore been advised that the operations of and activities of food, pharmaceutical products companies and their packaging materials (flexible and corrugated), service providers (logistic companies), transporters should not be hindered by officials and agents of state governments.
To ensure the safety of food, medical and pharmaceutical products companies and their packaging materials (flexible and corrugated), service providers (logistic companies), transporters and their employees who will be on the road this period.
To guarantee that the distribution , movement of raw and packaging materials from various points within and across states is seamless.
That in the event of closure of open markets or shops, clear alternatives are defined on how to get finished products to consumers in their neighbourhood.
The responsiveness of relevant agencies of state government in playing their part fully in ensuring that what they need to do as prescribed by the law and extant regulations are carried out with dispatch.
For their part, all food, pharmaceutical and medical companies are required to issue all suppliers and transporters a letter of authority confirming that they are authorised.
Also, all the staff should ensure they have identity cards with a copy of the letter of authority and organisations must ensure compliance with all COVID- 19 guidelines on social distancing, personal and respiratory hygiene for safety of individuals and community at large.
The letter of authority promised to provide toll free numbers that could be called in case of any bottlenecks with the letter of authority.