The Federal Executive Council (FEC) on Wednesday approved the National Quality Policy intended to ensure that goods exported from Nigeria are acceptable to the countries of import.
Briefing correspondents at the end meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari at the presidential villa, Abuja on Wednesday, Minister of Industry Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo, explained that the policy would help the country’s exporters who have suffered for a long time.
He said: “For a long time, Nigerian exporters have been suffering because of lack of quality of their goods. We felt that it was high time we actually have a policy which will create a situation whereby standard of the Nigerian goods that are exported would be raised such that that rejection would stop.
“This policy will create a situation whereby the government and the private sector will be able to collaborate to set up quality testing centres, testing labs which we hope will have accreditation with international centres, such that any good that has approved to have met the standard, would be of international standard.”
Adebayo said the council also approved the ratification of the Nigerian/Hungarian Trade Agreement whose essence he explained is for Nigerian businessmen to have access to exporting their goods to Hungary and to further increase trade between the two countries.
Similarly, he said the council also approved a N50 million variation of power contract in the Kano Free Trade Zone following a memo he presented to FEC on behalf of the Nigerian Export Processing Zone Authority.
Adebayo explained that the contract was awarded in 2018 for underground cabling for power project within the Kano Free Trade Zone but was not completed before certain specification changes were made.
“So the contractor requested a variation of a six per cent increase of the initial contract sum, which amounted to about N50 million. Council has approved that variation and the job which has reached 93 per cent completion will be completed within the next six months,” he added.
Adebayo said the council also approved another contract for Nigerian Export Processing Zone Authority for the purchase of a property in Lagos to be used as their Lagos zonal office.
Also speaking, the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, said the council approved the sum of N1,146,659,500 billion for the award of contract for the installation of solar street lighting for the Karshi-Jikwoyi dual carriage road in Abuja.
Speaking on behalf of the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Mohammed Bello, he said the contract was awarded to Messrs Bassman Nigeria Limited and completion period of six months.
Mohammed explained: “This is a 20-kilometre street lighting project and the area host some very strategic institutions such as the Treasury Academy, new Correctional Center which is under construction and it also houses the Federal Science College, the Armed Forces Post Service Housing Scheme in addition to Police Housing Scheme among others.
“Apart from beautifying the area it also provides better security for the area. It means the SDG goal number 11 will be met and at the same time the global energy policy.”
In his remarks at the briefing, Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, said the council approved the contract for the design and deployment of contract performance and compliance for highway and road management system for N203,845,332.50.
He explained the rationale: “This is an information and communication technology device being procured by the ministry in order to improve its capacity to monitor not only contract performance but also maintenance of its roads and to empower not only its 36 controllers in each of the state of the federation but also, the six zonal directors to improve our service delivery.
“The importance of deploy ICT now perhaps would be better appreciated when it is understood that we have over 13,000 kilometres of road networks at different stages of construction or rehabilitation as at the close of December 2020. And those 13,000 plus kilometres are manifest in over 700 different contracts.
“I continue to explain that some of our roads are so long that we have five different contractors.
“Like the Kano-Maiduguri road, for example, we have five different contractors there, Benin to Lokoja, we have five different contractors there and so on and so forth. So we have different contacts to manage and so we are deploying ICT there.
“Upon full deployment, one of the things you will see is that citizens will be expected to become an army of reporters providing us with information so that we can respond more quickly. Because this will be a web-based reporting and monitoring system.”
Also approved for the Works and Housing Ministry, is the ratification of the emergency roads repairs done in Zamfara State in 2016 on rain washed out Gumi bridge, Dakitawa, Kebbi to Sokoto State border, Guasu to Talatu Mafarawa to Sokoto border.
He added: “The contract was awarded under the public procurement act in emergency situations as provisional contracts. So we had to go through the procurement process, file reports of completion and then come to seek ratification.
“So, the work had since been completed but the paperwork has now led us here. And the ratification was granted today by FEC for N792,370,6078.86.”
The minister of state for power, Goddy Jedi-Agba, also spoke on the memo approved for his ministry by FEC including two months extension and the sum of N124.2 million for the variation of contract for the construction of sub-stations projects in Lanlate and Abeokuta.
He said: “The contract was awarded because of the typography of that area. The typography is tricky and so there is a need to upgrade and make the facilities usable and accessible by the people.
“So, if we have those two substations fixed, the transmission of power will be stepped up in that area and the whole of Ogun State and most of the South West will have improved power.”
Agba informed that the council was notified of the progress in the metering Programme in the country, saying: “You know the president has approved the metering Program-me for the whole country. So the Yola DISCO wrote to notify us that they have commenced this process and have entered into an agreement with Meter Asset Provider (MAP).
“So, this ongoing and we assure you that the present directive regarding metering of the entire country will soon be completed and services will be improved.”
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