The federal government has inaugurated a seven-man Joint Technical Task Team on Emergency Response to COVID-19 to ensure unrestricted movement of agricultural products across the country.

The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Alhaji Sabo Nanono, while inaugurating the team in Abuja, said the move was part of efforts to cushion the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Nanono urged the team to facilitate free movement of agricultural products across the country.

He urged state governors to offer necessary assistance to the team to ease their job.

The minister called on the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) to ensure that transporters involved in conveying agricultural products adhered strictly to the guidelines for movement of goods.

Nanono stressed that at no point should transporters conveying agricultural products also convey passengers, saying it was against the guidelines for movement of agricultural products.

“Numerous reports have been received by the ministry of agriculture on the problems faced by transporters of food, livestock, and agriculture inputs in different parts of the country.

However, Assistant Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Austin Agbonlahor, in charge of operations is the chairman of the task team.

Other members of the team are Assistant Commandant General (ACG) Bunu Modu from the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps and Mr. Ibikunle Baruwa, National President NURTW.

The team also has Mr. Farouk Mudi, National President, All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN) and Mr Chris Isizuzo, National President, Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) as members.

In his remarks, the chairman of the technical task team, Agbonlahor assured of the team’s commitment to discharging its duties effectively.

He said they would swing into action immediately to ensure unrestricted movement of agricultural products in all states.

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