High-risk foods that are not handled and used correctly are the leading reason for foodborne illness outbreaks. It is estimated that 600 million (nearly one in 10 people in the world) become ill after eating contaminated food and 420,000 die each year, resulting in the loss of 33 million years of healthy life. In Zimbabwe, foodborne illness is one of the common health problems, ranging from diarrhea to cancer.
To save lives and promote good health, "it is important to have a well-prepared food inspection service that can achieve rapid and cost-effective control of hazardous foods," said Victor Nyamandi, Director of the Ministry's Department of Environmental Health Services. of health. and Child Care (MoHCC).
In response to this call, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) under the European Union (EU)-funded project Transforming Zimbabwe's Animal Health and Food Security Systems for the Future ( ZAGP-SAFE) has been training environmental health personnel around the world. of the country in Food Safety Risk Analysis, focusing on risk assessment, risk management and risk communication.
According to the FAO/WHO Food Safety Risk Analysis Guide for National Food Safety Authorities, FAO has, since November 2021, collaborated with the Zimbabwean government to train 311 food safety inspectors. food.
“We trained the last group of 36 food inspectors from Matebeleland North Province from April 6-8, 2022. Overall, the training strengthened the capacity and skills of the Environmental Health Officers in the Ministry, in the application of risk-based approaches during food safety inspections. , including the familiarization of the participants with the notions of combination of risks, foods and hazards”. Victor Nyamandi.
Speaking after the training workshop for food inspectors from Matebeleland North, FAO SAFE Project Coordinator Basil Mugweni stated that “the training would also strengthen the capacity and skills of Environmental Health Officers, including familiarization of participants with the notions of risk, food and danger. combinations.”
MoHCC Food Safety Manager Margaret Tawodzera noted that the training workshops improved the ability of food inspectors to identify high-risk foods or high-risk food preparation processes, as well as allowing inspectors to focus inspection on those foods or processes that are most likely to cause foodborne illness if left unchecked.
One of the workshop participants, Michelle Shamiso Ng'andu, a professor at Bulawayo Polytechnic, added that the training workshops equipped her with the knowledge and skills to protect consumers by implementing proper food controls to ensure that food is; properly handled, stored, manufactured, processed, transported, prepared, served and sold.
“It was a great honor and pleasure to be part of this workshop. This workshop will help me in my day to day activities as I am a lecturer training Environmental Health Trainees (EHT). In particular, the training challenged me to think big. I was motivated throughout the workshop and was able to identify gaps in food hygiene. I know for a fact that when I return to the area of food safety, my thrust will be to encourage students to identify problems in the community and develop simple, low-cost systems and technologies that protect their communities from food hazards,” Ng' said. I walked
About the SAFE project
The scope of the SAFE project is not limited to training in food safety risk analysis; It also covers the development of policy documents such as the country's Food Safety strategy, minimum health guidelines for Food Establishments, and Food Recall Regulations.
“FAO, under the SAFE project, is also helping the Department of Environmental Health Services to develop standard operating procedures (SOPs), capacity building through the procurement of food inspection kits and the development of a system information management on food safety and port health”, Basil.
In addition, the SAFE project is strengthening the capacity of the Department of Veterinary Services (DVS) to provide animal health services to improve livestock production and productivity in rural areas. To this end, the project has facilitated the development of five new regulations to improve the environment for ranchers and other value chain actors to do business easily.
“To bring essential veterinary supplies closer to rural farmers, the project has upgraded 26 animal health centers in 18 districts in Zimbabwe. These centers are set up to offer a wide range of valuable supplies to reduce high supply costs by eliminating travel costs and middlemen who often sell counterfeit drugs,” Basil said.
For the sustainability of the project's animal health interventions, FAO has facilitated partnerships between private sector institutions and the DVS to provide sustainable veterinary input supplies, which will result in increased livestock production.
The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has caused a global health emergency and an economic slowdown, calling for prevention while promoting economic activities. Using the International Labor Organization (ILO) Start and Improve Your Business (SIYB) modules for business development, UN agencies, in collaboration with the Nigerian government, jointly implemented a project to enhance the capacity of MSMEs /local manufacturers to produce quality personal protective equipment and accessories. other health-related products. The IMESUN training, implemented jointly by the ILO and UN Women, has trained up to 114 MSMEs from the six geopolitical zones of Nigeria.
The United Nations System in Nigeria and the Government of Nigeria implemented a project to strengthen the capacity of MSMEs and local manufacturers to produce high-quality personal protective equipment (PPE) and healthcare-related products. The project, financed by the United Nations Basket Fund and implemented jointly by the International Labor Organization (ILO), the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the World Health Organization (WHO) and the UN Women, supports the ability of Nigerian MSMEs and manufacturers to meet both internal and external demand.
As the pandemic has disrupted global supply chains, many countries are focusing on meeting their domestic needs. Many MSMEs are switching to PPE production to take advantage of the economic opportunity. Several local factories, industries and manufacturers (including tailors) have changed their production lines to take advantage of this increased demand. However, this rise has not been without challenges ranging from understanding how to build a viable business to producing quality PPE.
Training objectives included the need to: address identified knowledge and skills gaps among business owners, especially those in PPE production; provide quality resources and technical support to help business owners grow and expand their business operations; identify other areas of support required in this area; develop an understanding of gender basics so that you can promote gender mainstreaming practices and human rights-based approaches in your business operations; and monitor, review, and certify Start and Improve Your Business trainers.
In her opening remarks at the event held at the Hotel Valencia on February 28, 2022, the Director of the ILO, Ms. Vanessa Phala, lamented the effect of COVID-19 on the country's economy. Speaking through Dino Corell, she affirmed that the crisis has affected investment, growth and employment while exerting a negative impact on the competitiveness of micro, small and medium enterprises. “The pandemic has an asymmetric impact on small businesses and the workers employed in these units, who have borne the brunt of the pandemic's fallout,” she said. Ms. Vanessa Phala expressed optimism and reiterated that micro, small and medium-sized enterprises in Nigeria are vital for decent and productive employment, accounting for two-thirds of all jobs globally and creating many new jobs. .
Along the same lines, UN Women National Program Officer, Ms. Patience Ekeoba, who represented the UN Women Country Representative, highlighted that UN Women will pay special attention to improving the marketing capabilities of women-owned MSMEs. for expanding business growth and policy adoption. issues associated with the distribution of products produced by women and young women entrepreneurs and expand gender-responsive procurement principles to ensure that government agencies, development partners and private sector entities prioritize PPE produced by women .
UNIDO's Lead Technical Advisor for the project, Jarl M Hansstein, in his goodwill message noted that a needs analysis was conducted on selected MSMEs to reveal the areas where they needed support and incentives to improve their products and business. He also mentioned that the project aims to help companies improve the quality of their PPE and also target export markets within the ECOWAS region. In addition, UNIDO will build on this important training, helping them to formulate and implement concrete business plans in relation to the specific objectives to be achieved.
The WHO coordinator for the project, Tayo Hamzat, stated that the project will not only contribute to improving Nigeria's health status, but will also help boost the economy by opening Nigerian produce to the international market because the project was designed to produce quality PPE. products in a safe and healthy environment for business. He added that this was a rich project because the selected beneficiaries would have interventions from four Participating United Nations Organizations (PUNO) and urged participants to make sure they seize the opportunity.
In his special remarks, the Honorable Minister of Labor and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, represented by Dr. Martina Nwordu, Director of Tasks and Special Projects, thanked the different struggles that the entrepreneurs went through and applauded the training as strategic. The minister affirmed that "it is, therefore, a good initiative to support these groups of entrepreneurs to access information for the promotion and positioning of young companies in Nigeria, as a good practice". He also pointed out that through the activities of NDE, a parastatal company under the Ministry of Labour, SMEs have benefited as groups and as individuals from business development as a means of job creation. He promised the ministry's willingness to effectively support and participate in the project.
Also speaking during the opening ceremony, the Director of Economic Services of the Federal Ministry of Women's Affairs through the Office of Women's Economic Empowerment Officer, Ms. Joy Obaje, pledged her support for the project. She also pointed to some ministry interventions to support women entrepreneurs, such as access to financial interventions, as well as the 50 Million Women's African Speaking Platform Project (50MAWSP) financed by the African Development Bank (AfDB) to contribute to the economic and social empowerment of 50 million women in business in 38 African countries.
IMESUN training was one of the intervention areas of the whole project and it started with the training of trainers. The trainers were appointed by ILO and UN Women tripartite partners, including the Nigerian Employers Consultative Association (NECA), the Nigerian Trades Union Congress (TUC), the Federal Ministry of Labor and Employment (FMLE), the Nigerian Congress Nigeria Labor Law (NLC) in addition to those nominated by the Federal Ministry of Women's Affairs (FMWA).
The Training of Entrepreneurs (TOE) using IMESUN modules focuses on starting and improving small businesses as a strategy to create more and better jobs for women and men. The program is made up of a set of interrelated training packages for different levels of business maturity, including Start Your Business; Improve your business; and expand your business. SIYB aims to increase the viability of MSMEs through management principles suitable for the environment of developing economies.
As many as 114 MSMEs (63 women-owned and 51 men-owned businesses) from Nigeria's six geopolitical zones have received training on how to grow their businesses with a gender lens. The trainings were held in three different locations across the country: 64 MSMEs from the northern region (NC, NE and NW) were trained in Abuja from February 28 to March 11; 25 MSMEs from the Southwest region were trained in Lagos from March 14 to 18, and up to 25 MSMEs from the Southeast and South-South regions were trained in Enugu from March 21 to 25. Some of the grantees have provided positive feedback on the quality of the program.
“In my five years running this business, I never thought about expanding, because I always had the belief that it's scary. This training made me realize that it is due to some bad business practices that I have advocated. For example, I have operated with the mindset that trading capital is mine and as such I must use it in any way I choose. My Ahaa moment came during the module on financial planning. I learned in detail the financial implications of every aspect of my business, as well as how to separate business money from personal money. In fact, if I had continued to run my business as I did before the training, especially financially, I would never have scaled up” Rashidat, a PPE entrepreneur from Kogi “The trainers showed a very high level of having been properly trained before training us. They were approachable, emotionally intelligent in managing the adult classes, and had a good grounding in business development SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures). They did everything possible so that the students reached a high level of satisfaction. The cartoon-level simplification and street-level clarity of the training manual, which is also adaptable to the Nigerian context, is something I have yet to see in any business development training. The naughty subject of cash flow has been stripped down to such basics that even a five-year college program can't pull it off. Simply put, the training manual is excellent for its intended purpose.” Muhammad Kachalla, PPE entrepreneur from Maiduguri.
In his remarks, one of the IMESUN trainers from the Nigerian Employers Consultative Association, Odunayo Balogun, thanked the funders and PUNOs of the project and described it as timely and asked MSMEs not to joke about the opportunity.
When you are an illegal immigrant, you are considered less than dogsNEW YORK, United States of America, January 14, 2022/APO Group/ --
“Soldiers shot us in the back as we fled through the forest. Some girls were raped and beaten. when they caught us [in a neighbouring country], the police made us sleep next to a bathroom. We had to ask them for food”, shares Alem Kifle* about his migration journey. “When you are an illegal immigrant, you are considered less than a dog.”
As the COVID-19 pandemic spread through Ethiopia, the country's already high unemployment rate increased and travel restrictions obstructed safe migration pathways for thousands of Ethiopians. In a desperate attempt to provide for her children, Kifle, like many others, turned to human traffickers who promised her work. But her journey ended with three months in prison in a foreign country before being deported back home.
“When I returned to Ethiopia, I had no money and was depressed. My son lived on the street and my daughter lived with a neighbor. In a situation like this, your own family may turn their backs on you,” he says.
Some 550,000 migrants were expected to return from the Gulf countries to Ethiopia in 2020 due to the pandemic, many of them traumatized by the violence they experienced during migration. Despite increased demand, shelters were unable to accommodate returnees because they did not have enough isolation spaces or personal protective equipment (PPE) to prevent coronavirus transmission and lacked qualified staff.
A safe space and a new beginning for victims of irregular migration and migrant women
Kifle was referred to one of these specialized women's shelters, run by the Good Samaritan Association (GSA) in December 2020. The GSA shelter provides safe accommodation, medical care, psychological counseling and vocational training for women survivors of violence victims of trafficking, deportees and returnees. . After completing vocational training that provides them with business skills as well as leadership and life skills, the women receive small grants to start their own businesses.
“The fact that I was able to access these services gave me hope and courage,” says Kifle. At the GSA shelter he received immediate medical treatment and counselling. She was also trained in food preparation. With the start-up capital she received from GSA, Kifle now runs a small tea and coffee shop in her hometown and raises her two children.
“Our role is to make women believe that they can work and that their lives can change,” says Hirut Yebabe, executive director of GSA. “We provide care services to survivors of violence, showing them love and compassion. It is always a great joy to see survivors grow up and become role models for other women.”
Between August and December 2020, GSA shelters in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa and the northern city of Gondar supported the rehabilitation of 55 trafficked, deported and returnee women and girls who experienced violence. All of them are now back in their communities, rebuilding their lives and earning a decent income.
Trauma healing through counseling
Migrant women and girls may experience violence at all stages of migration: during the journey or in transit, upon arrival in the country of destination and upon return to their country of origin. While survivors require a variety of services, a 2016 UN Women study found that most survivors rated counseling as the most valuable service they received in shelters.
Beza Hailu* immigrated to Beirut in Lebanon to work as a domestic worker to pay for her mother's medical expenses in Ethiopia. But her employer physically and mentally abused her and withheld her pay. While Hailu was suffering, her mother died from her illness.
“It broke my heart to pieces. I couldn't save her. The guilt was heavy…. I got depressed and became addicted. I lost my purpose in life,” shares Hailu. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit Lebanon, Hailu was deported to Ethiopia. She was referred to an Agar Ethiopia Benevolent Society women's shelter in Addis Ababa, where she received intensive counseling.
“When I gave up, my counselor believed in me and inspired me. Frequent counseling sessions silenced the voice in my head that told me I was hopeless. It was like I was given the opportunity to start a new life,” says Hailu.
Hailu's counselor was one of 34 professional counselors who had completed the UN Women training on gender-based violence counseling in 2020, funded by the governments of Denmark, Norway, Sweden and the Netherlands. The training focuses on specific methods for providing personalized counseling and therapy to survivors of violence, based on the core principles of 'Do No Harm' and the empowerment of women, from the Essential Services Package, developed under the Joint Global Program United Nations Essential Services. .
“Looking back, I realize how strong and independent I was to survive what I've been through. I am a changed woman and I am very happy,” says Hailu.
In 2020, the Ethiopian Ministry of Women, Children and Youth, in partnership with UN Women and UNFPA, and funded by the governments of Denmark, Norway, Sweden and the Netherlands, finalized a national standard operating procedure (SOP) for shelter services it now provides Guiding Principles and Standards for the Provision of Shelter in Ethiopia aligned with the United Nations Essential Services Package. The SOP was launched on November 25, 2021, at the start of the global campaign 16 Days of Activism to End Gender Discrimination.
*Name changed to protect survivor's identity
I was so happy to go back to my country and reunite with my familyGENEVA, Switzerland, November 16, 2021 / APO Group / -
Somalia is a key origin and transit country for migrants, although many of its nationals also return, sometimes due to unforeseen problems on major migration routes or in places of destination.
Since 2017, more than 950 Somalis have been assisted to return voluntarily under a program funded by the European Union, known as the Joint EU-IOM Initiative for the Protection and Reintegration of Migrants in the Horn of Africa (“the EU-IOM joint initiative”).
Support for stranded nationals allowed them to return home in safety and dignity. Among them was Fatima, 23, repatriated from Sudan and also a mother of a child. "I was so happy to return to my country and to be reunited with my family," she said. "Since I couldn't reach my destination country, which was Germany, there was no other reason for me to stay in Sudan."
Following a vulnerability assessment, returnees assisted under the joint EU-IOM initiative can be further supported to restore their lives to their communities of origin. Options include the possibility of enrolling in vocational training or being funded to set up a micro-enterprise.
Children are helped to enroll in school while returning communities can also be assisted in setting up initiatives that tackle some of the drivers of irregular migration.
More than 780 returnees have benefited from reintegration assistance since 2017.
One of these beneficiaries was Mohamed (26), a returnee from Libya, who chose to open a small store in Bosaso. He said he was familiar with this type of business and was doing well.
However, until now, there were no agreed national standards for the management and reintegration of migrants returning to Somalia. But that changed in early November when partners adopted guidelines for Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration (AVRR), a process long supported by IOM.
The spearheading agreement on the guidelines was the Office of the Special Envoy (OSE) for the rights of migrants and children, which reports to the Office of the Prime Minister of the Federal Government of Somalia.
OSE is IOM's principal counterpart in Somalia at the strategic and political level and chairs the Return and Readmission Working Group (RRTF) which coordinates assistance to returnees and migrants at the federal and interstate level. members.
The RRTF is the main coordination mechanism for the main interventions of the Joint EU-IOM Initiative in Somalia.
With the agreement on national guidelines for AVRR, partners can now expect a coherent approach to the return and reintegration of vulnerable migrants and returnees.
Ambassador Mariam Yassin, Somalia's Special Envoy for Migration and Children's Rights, paid tribute to IOM and the EU for supporting the RRTF's consultations on SOPs. She said government buy-in was the most crucial element in the consultation process that dates back to 2018.
Richard Danziger, IOM's head of mission in Somalia, said the migration situation in Somalia, particularly in Puntland, required a strong government response, adding that SOPs would facilitate a coordinated response for various government institutions.
Puntland - particularly its port city of Bosaso - is the busiest sea crossing in the East and Horn of Africa and is mainly used by Ethiopian migrants seeking to travel to the Arabian Peninsula via Yemen.
The management of the Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA, is ready to ensure optimal use of its facilities in the country's seaports, according to Acting Director General Mohammed Bello-Koko.
He made this known in a statement Monday in Lagos, saying that it was to position the ports on a competitive advantage in the sub-region of West and Central Africa.
The statement was signed by Olaseni Alakija, Managing Director, Corporate and Strategic Communications, NPA.
Mr. Bello-Koko, according to the statement, spoke during a visit to the facilities of the recently rehabilitated control tower located at the port complex of Lagos, LPC, Apapa.
The acting director general said that it had become opportune to modernize the port facilities in order to have a positive impact on the operational efficiency of the port.
He said that effective communication is an important variable for effective performance of seaports.
“We aspire to be competitors in the sub-region. One of the ways to do this is to make sure that our facilities such as the control towers are up to date and upgraded to work with modern communication and radar systems.
“This will improve communication, reduce waiting times for ships and further reduce the cost of doing business in our ports,” he said.
Regarding the well-being of pilots, he said that the NPA attached great importance to the comfort of "this category of personnel much appreciated by the Authority".
“We are committed to the well-being of pilots, the issues of pilot accommodation, medical care and recreational facilities in the rehabilitated nine-story control towers are world class.
“This is accompanied by the provision of facilities such as dormitories, a gym, canteens, kitchens and meeting / conference rooms for pilots and other port personnel,” he said. -he declares.
Mr. Bello-Koko said that a second control tower in Tincan was also being upgraded to allow communication with ships using the VHF frequency.
He said the rehabilitated control towers would also have updated radar and communications equipment that would allow communication between the ports of Lagos and the deepwater port of Lekki and the Dangote refinery jetty. .
Mr. Bello-koko said the NPA will deploy more marine equipment such as pilot cutters and security patrol boats to various port locations to improve the efficiency and security of ports around ports.
"We will make sure to hire you for optimal performance," he stressed.
In a related development, Bello-Koko had allayed stakeholder fears over insinuations that thug activities at the TinCan Island port could negatively affect the progress already made by the Eto electronic truck call system.
The acting director general, who visited the affected site where vandals attempted to destroy the 'Eto' infrastructure but were quickly apprehended by vigilant NPA security officers, assured that rehabilitation work had already started .
He said the incident did not affect operations in any way.
Bello-Koko appreciated the stakeholders, in particular the Lagos State Government, for their collaboration in the application of standard operating procedures, SOPs, in the use of Eto which had remained a continuum.
He took advantage of this visit to declare zero tolerance to vandalism in the country's seaports.
The Acting Director General called on everyone to join with the Authority in the auspicious task of hoisting the nation's flag among the committee of nations with efficient ports around the world.
By Lucy OgalueThe Nigerian Shippers Council (NSC) urged port health services to maximize customs clearance time and implement the Nigerian Port Process Manual (NPPM) for the efficiency of the port system in the country.Mr. Hassan Bello, executive secretary / director-general of the NSC, made the call when he visited the director of port health services of the Ministry of Health, Dr. Geoffery Okatubo, on Friday in Abuja.Bello stressed that the cargo dwell time should be three to seven days compared to 20 to 21 days.“So, like any port health agency, we want to be aware of the weather. Time is running out for customs clearance at the port. So when they get on the ship, it should be as soon as the ship arrives."And it should last at least 30 to 45 minutes and the number of officers on board should be three at most."He noted that if all of this was done, it would attract international shipowners to Nigerian ports.According to Bello, there is a need for the NPPM to be owned by the relevant agencies and stakeholders to ensure better port services.“It's an important manual. Our ports are not doing well, they are improving every day, but we have to recognize what we are supposed to be doing.“Everyone in the port must have a standard operating procedure (SOP). We can't just be there in the ports like carefree chicken flowing all over the place."Everyone has their function, where, how, why and who should do what function, so that if there is order, efficiency, there will be a reduction in corruption," he said.He described the manual as the bible of port operations, stressing that everyone should obey the rules.“This SOP has been led, streamlined by NPA, NSC, and many agencies, launched in 2020 by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, but somehow it is not effective because there is no has no one to own it.“There is no leadership in this program, so recently the vice president appointed NSC as the lead agency.“And our role is not to do anyone's SOP but to coordinate, oversee and see that all of these things are done to make our ports efficient so that our ports don't get corrupted.“We want an efficient port because we are in competition with the region of West and Central Africa.“We want all cargo to arrive in Nigeria first before it goes to other countries, but now it's the other way around.“So we have to clean up our ports and one of the things we have that concerns your authority / your services is the health of the port,” he said.In his response, the director of port health services assured the NSC of the services' support, in particular, to ensure the reduction of the corruption perception index.Regarding the turnaround time, Okatubo said the time agreed for the manual was sufficient, but called for it to be relaxed for the time being due to the COVID-19 pandemic and guidelines.“The timing you mentioned is great for us, but in this COVID-19 season, there are certain port health activities that we are supposed to conduct, especially for any ship arriving for the first time.“So, for this period, I want to appeal to you, let's not follow this strictly because at the moment there are some countries that interest us a lot; Brazil, South Africa, and India.“I want to assure you that port health is firmly behind you. We are with you and will do everything to help you reduce the Port Corruption Perception Index, '' Okatubo added.(NAN)
By Chiazam George / Olive Ugochukwu / Okon Okon
The African Initiative for Governance (AIG) presented the very first Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) to the Office of the Federation Chief Public Service Officer (HOCSF).
The Nigerian News Agency (NAN) reports that SOPs are a set of step-by-step instructions compiled by an organization to help workers perform routine operations.
It aims to achieve efficiency, output quality and consistency of performance while reducing communication problems and non-compliance with industry regulations.
The HOS, Dr Folasade Yemi-Esan, while receiving the document on Tuesday in Abuja, congratulated the President of the AIG, Mr Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede, for his collaboration with his office for the success of the work on the SOPs.
“Developing SOPs for HOCSF office services required a thorough process to help officers understand and document their business processes, which is a fundamental prerequisite for digitization.
“The processes leading up to the development of the 26 SOP manuals that are about to be officially released today were indeed rigorous,” she said.
According to Yemi-Esan, the main goal of SOPs is to develop an effective system that complies with industry-specific regulations and standards to significantly reduce or avoid operational errors as well as unwanted work variations.
She said SOPs would also ensure repeatability and consistency in performance of any kind of process, help employees complete complex tasks.
The HOS further explained that in an age of technological advancement and digitization, the civil service could not afford to be left behind or operate in isolation and could not continue to do things in the 'old order and expect new results.
She said the HOCSF board decided to take the lead and go further to approve the immediate development of Service-wide SOPs, starting with four MDAs selected as the pilot.
“These MDAs are the Federal Civil Service Commission, the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, the State House and the Federal Ministry of Transport.
“To keep up to date, the public service must therefore continue to be dynamic and innovative.
“What we are seeing today is therefore a clear testament to our determination to embrace new ways of doing things that promote service delivery effectively and efficiently,” HOS explained.
Speaking earlier before making the presentation of the document, the President of AIG said that the initiative was not only important for HOCSF but also for AIG and the entire civil service sector in the country.
According to Aig-Imoukhuede, the Nigerian federal civil service has taken a small step that will take the sector to a greater height.
The SOP initiative, the AIG president explained that it was part of the efforts of the HOCSF office to reform the country's civil service. (NOPE)(NAN)
By monday Ijeh
The Inspector General of Police (IG), Mr. Mohammed Adamu, has ordered the adequate deployment of police personnel across the country to ensure a smooth Easter celebration.
The Force's Public Relations Officer (FPRO), Mr. Frank Mba, revealed this in a statement Friday in Abuja.
Mba said the order was in line with the force's commitment to ensure crime-free Easter celebrations across the country.
He called on all State Police Commissioners (PCs) and their Deputy Inspectors General of Police (AIG) to ensure full security of all public spaces and essential national property.
Adamu said the deployment would involve both covert and manifest agents, as well as other operational assets in areas of security interest in PCs and AIGs areas of responsibility (AoRs).
“They must also ensure that trusted, proactive, high-visibility patrols are carried out along highways, car parks, train stations, airports, places of worship, banks and other financial institutions.
“Adequate measures must also be taken to create a peaceful environment, free from crime and conducive to the development of religious, cultural and socio-economic activities,” he said.
The IG also requested the CPs and their supervisory AIGs to ensure adequate supervision of the men assigned to these assignments.
According to him, they must be professional and courteous to law-abiding citizens, but firm and ruthless to criminals.
“To this end, the IG surveillance unit and the X-Squad have received marching orders to monitor and control the activities of the police officers who monitor the highways.
"This is to ensure respect for citizens' rights and operational compliance with the Force's standard operating procedures (SOP) and rules of engagement (RoE)," he added.
The IG commended Nigerians, in particular, the Christian community for the commemoration of the crucifixion, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
He commended Nigerians for their support and called for continued cooperation with the Nigerian police and other security agencies in providing timely information that would aid in the prevention and detection of crime.
Adamu pledged that the police would continue to do everything in their power to ensure the safety and security of Nigerians. (NOPE)(NAN)
The Federal Ministry of Health (FMoH) says it will inaugurate an 18-man National COVID-19 Vaccine Task Team (VTT), as part of measures to ensure vaccine security against the virus in Nigeria.
The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, said this on Monday in Abuja at the joint national briefing of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19.
“Now that vaccines are known to be close at hand, the Federal Ministry of Health is taking measures toward vaccine security, for which an 18-man National COVID-19 Vaccine Task Team with seven Terms of Reference (ToR) will be inaugurated.
“The ToR will include generating strategies for acquisition, deployment and options for licensed production by Biovaccine Nigeria Ltd.
“Our options with led Covax facility remains our first line of engagement,” Ehanire said.
He said that as at Monday, November 23, 2020, Nigeria recorded 66,383 COVID-19 cases from 743,298 samples tested so far, with 62,076 persons successfully treated and discharged.
He said that the nation sadly recorded 1167 deaths with a case fatality rate of 1.76%.
The minister said that eight states accounted for 72 per cent of confirmed cases, because they were testing and reporting steadily.
According to him, of the 1,235 confirmed cases reported in 22 states in the past week, Kaduna, Lagos, FCT, Oyo, Plateau and Ogun account for over 84 per cent.
“We are thus not yet where we want to be with our testing rate. We shall continue to engage states to strengthen active case finding and testing, since we are committed to lowering case fatality rate to less than one per cent, to save more lives from COVID-19.
“We are by no means out of the woods and must not become complacent.
“Citizens with symptoms suggestive of COVID -19, or those who had contact with confirmed COVID-19 patients should present themselves for testing and if positive, comply with instructions for treatment,” he said.
The minister said that the government was keeping vigilance, with regard to the exploding numbers of COVID-19 cases in Europe and America by strengthening the capacity for treatment, ensuring health workers were kept updated and ensuring the health facilities had adequate supplies of needed materials.
He said that the government was also reviewing the entry protocols at the nation’s borders, to reduce risks of COVID-19 importation by sealing gaps in present protocol and responding to emerging threats.
He said: “Strategies for capacity building continues, with nationwide training of intensivists, of which three trainers will emerge per state and FCT, who will scale training down to nurses and other cadres of health workers.
“The strategy to keep our health system ready includes ensuring oxygen availability at Points of Treatment and scaling up oxygen availability to state hospitals and PHCs,” he said.
Ehanire said that the government would analyse reports of isolation and treatment centres to identify gaps and challenges, the result of which would be used to address thematic areas like monitoring of isolation and treatment centres, logistics, data management, training and development and review of protocols and SOPs.
He also advised against non-essential travels to high burden countries, due to increased risk of exposure to infection, especially of persons with known co-morbidities.
The minister also said that the reported “strange deaths” in Delta, Enugu, Ebonyi, Benue, Bauchi and Kogi states, turned out to be yellow fever outbreak, as confirmed by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), who were responding professionally with Rapid Response Teams to the outbreak.
“Of 586 suspected cases, 40 were confirmed in laboratory tests, with 10 deaths as at last week,” he said.
Ehanire said that in spite of increased COVID-19 alert, Nigeria still virtually hosted the global Stop Tuberculosis Partnership Board meeting last week, at which President Muhammadu Buhari delivered a virtual welcome message and the First Lady, Hajiya Aisha Buhari delivered a statement, as the TB champion.
He said, “Nigeria’s response in the fight against TB suffered decline due to COVID-19 and a new strategy was needed to step up performance.”
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Felix Ajide
The Federal Government has launched Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) to engender efficiency, quality output, increased productivity and uniformity of performance in the planning arm of the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning.
Mr Clement Agba, the Minister of State for Finance, Budget and National Planning said this on Monday in Abuja during the launching and a five-day workshop on the SOP, the national planning arm of the ministry.
Agba said SOP would also eliminate duplication, miscommunication and failure to comply with processes, procedures and regulations.
“This is not just a vague aspiration because with SOPs you can achieve the same results without sacrificing growth.
“SOP provides the ethical and professional principles and step-by-step guidance on providing appropriate services.
“This will be important during the technical sessions of the ongoing Medium Term National Development Plan that will commence from 2021 to 2025 and the long term perspective plan, which is Agenda 2050,’’ he said.
Agba said that the keystone value, which imbued effort was to ensure that the SOP was an essential prerequisite for any quality initiative because studies showed that SOPs had significant potential to enable provider organisations to improve quality without increasing costs.
“Also, SOP is an important document in terms of quality measures and evaluation.
“I am confident that the successful delivery of the implementation will usher in a new dawn in the reform drive of the ministry and the public sector in general.
“I have no doubt in my mind that this workshop will build the capacity of our staff to achieve the expected results,” he said.
Edited By: Grace Yussuf