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‘This Coronavirus is not helping matters’ - Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has been left lamenting the outbreak of the novel coronavirus globally; and how the disease is affecting the nation’s economy.

President Muhammadu Buhari making a point at the Villa during another courtesy call [Twitter/BashirAhmaad]

The price of oil has plummeted and oscillated between $31 per barrel and $36 per barrel in the last couple of days, mainly due to low demand caused by the coronavirus and a price war over supply cuts among top oil producers Russia, Saudi Arabia and the United States.
Nigeria will now have to readjust its budget numbers after pegging the 2020 appropriation act at $57 per barrel.
Addressing members of the Joint Health Sector Unions (JOHESU) and Assembly Healthcare Professionals Associations (AHPA) who paid him a courtesy visit at the presidential villa, on Tuesday, March 10, President Buhari pleaded for understanding from everyone.
During the visit, the union requested the president’s intervention in the adjustment of consolidated health salary structure (CONHESS), the withheld April and May 2018 salaries of members, gazetting of scheme of service for nurses and restoration of teaching allowances, among others.
In his response, Buhari appealed to the health workers to be patient with his administration as he grapples with the negative effect of the coronavirus to the economy, according to a statement issued by his spokesperson Garba Shehu.
He assured them that the government has been looking into their predicament with a view to resolving them, and asked them to continue to work for the development of the country.
“Your case is certainly receiving attention, but you must bear in mind the condition that the country is in now. Coronavirus is not improving matters,” the president was quoted to have said.
“It is affecting what we very much depend on, the petroleum industry and therefore revenue.
“So, please try and help us with your people. Let us be patriotic, let us look at the ways and means of the government and appeal for restraint…We have to emphasize that it is very important that we maintain cohesion together because if we allow sentiments or popularity to overwhelm our reasoning faculties, we will be in trouble and it will be too late for us to adjust, so please bear with us.” 

The president added that his administration’s successful drive for food sufficiency in the last four years will come in handy with the drop in government revenue.
“We thank God; God is very sympathetic to us. The three previous rainy seasons were good. We had good foresight in getting fertiliser, making it available and we virtually achieved food security,” he said. 
“We made good decisions, and we saved hundreds of millions of dollars on the importation of food. If not, we would have been in real trouble,” he added.
Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State updates President Muhammadu Buhari on the efforts to prevent the spread of Coronavirus in the country. [Twitter/@MBuhari]
Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State updates President Muhammadu Buhari on the efforts to prevent the spread of Coronavirus in the country. [Twitter/@MBuhari]
The coronavirus (COVID-19) has now afflicted every continent on the planet besides Antarctica.
Nigeria has two confirmed cases of the virus, with about 100 people quarantined over possible contact with the index patient.
The novel coronavirus has now infected more than 115,800 people and killed over 4,200 worldwide, CNN reports.

‘This Coronavirus is not helping matters’ - Buhari ‘This Coronavirus is not helping matters’  - Buhari Reviewed by opeyemi on 2:01:00 am Rating: 5