Business - Business & Economy - News - October 9, 2021

Nigerian governors pledge to support endowment for medical research

MEDIATRACNET

The Nigerian Governors Forum (NGF) on Friday pledged to support a national initiative to mobilize resources for the establishment of an Endowment for medical
research in the country.

The pledge by the governors was contained in the communique issued at the end of the 34th teleconference meeting of the Forum on Thursday.

The Chairman of the NGF and governor of Ekiti State, Kayode Fayemi, who signed the communique said the collective pledge was to support research in priority medical fields in the country.

He said the pledge followed a presentation by the former Ministier of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Raji Fashola, to the Forum soliciting the support of its members.

Fayemi said Fashola, who is the Chairman of the Board of
Trustees to the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research Foundation, had sought the support of the governors on a national fundraising
initiative that would mobilize resources for the establishment of an Endowment for medical
research in the country.

The Forum called on all State governments to individually
advance support for the initiative at the State level.

The NGF Chairman, who said members of the Forum deliberated on a number of other issues of national importance, including the recent suspension of the strike by the National Association of Resident Doctors of Nigeria (NARD).

Despite the suspension of the strike, Fayemi said the Forum noted there were still unresolved issues in five states, namely Abia, Imo, Ondo, Kaduna and Ekiti.

He members resolved to advise Governors of the affected states to appoint either their deputies or
any other high-ranking government official, such as the Commissioner of Health, to take up the discussion with the Association at the State level with a view to resolving the crisis.

Also, the Chairman said members also received a presentation from Mark Giambrone, the Country Coordinator for PEPFAR in Nigeria, on the status of state engagement that is paving the way towards HIV epidemic control in the country.

With the country on the verge of reaching control status by the end of 2022, he said the governors pledged to continue to facilitate access to HIV testing and
treatment for more Nigerians.

They also committed to supporting campaigns and initiatives that would reduce stigmatization among people living with HIV/AIDS.

Fayemi said the Forum also consented to the representation of state governments and the presentation of a set of bankable projects selected from 12 participating states, 2 per geo-political zones in the country in areas of energy, technology, fintech, transportation, manufacturing and agriculture.

He said the consent followed a briefing from the representative of the Nigeria-Arabian Gulf Chamber of
Commerce on a memorandum signed with the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment to attract foreign direct investment into the country via the ongoing Dubai Expo 2020.

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