The Federal Government has approved N126 billion for the reconstruction of 12 roads across the country.
The approval was formally made by the Federal Executive Council, FEC, meeting presided over by the Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, yesterday.
The council also approved a new National Health Policy for the country. Briefing State House correspondents at the end of the meeting, which appeared to be the longest since the coming of the present administration in May 2015, Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, who was joined by his counterparts in the Ministries of Health; Budget and National Planning, said the roads would reduce time spent on the roads during journeys and restore confidence in the construction industry when completed.
He said: “Council considered and approved the award of contracts for 12 roads, one of which is the Dukka Gulu road, in Kano.
‘’Others are spread across Bauchi, Adamawa, Kwara, Gombe/Adamawa, Kano, Enugu, Kaduna, Bauchi/Gombe, “The headline figures are in the region of N126 billion but I think that is not the story’’.
The story really is what the award of those contracts will do to the economy. It will restore confidence to the construction industry.
“Contractors who have been owed for two, three years before Mr President was elected are back in various states, they recalled their workers and as they are purchasing gravel, cement, the economy is on its way back with a bend and this situates what the Minister of Budget and Planning’’.
The New National Health Policy, Professor Isaac Adewole, said FEC also gave its nod for a new national health policy, making it the third for the country.
He said the first one for the country was enacted in 1988, while the second was done in 2004. He said: “Council also received the new national draft health policy 2016 today’’.
The title of the policy is promoting the health of Nigerians to accelerate socio-economic development.
“The process of getting the policy to FEC took some time. We constituted a technical working group, chaired by former Minister of Health, Professor Eyitayo Lambo, to look into the country’s context, the challenges, what went wrong in the past and how we can reposition the health sector.
Meanwhile, the Minister has disowned a university don, who recently came up with cure for HIV/AIDS.
Adewole told journalists that ethical standards were not followed in the experiment, saying: “On the issue of HIV, we are yet to get the final report from the Director-General, Nigerian Institute for Medical Research but what is clear is that those activities were carried out without a valid ethical approval.”