Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Prince Clem Ikanade Agba, has assured Nigerians that the revision of the 2020 budget by the federal government was not intended to impose austerity measures on them.
He said the major concern of government was how to ensure the retention of existing jobs and creation of new ones, adding that "we looked basically at how to save lives; how to keep our economy off the ravages of the pandemic by reducing the impact of vulnerabilities."
The minister spoke as one of the discussants of the "Impact of COVID-19 on the Economy particularly on the 2020 and 2021 Budgets" during a live discussion programme- "Radio Link"- monitored on Radio Nigeria's Capital FM 92.9 at the weekend in Abuja.
It was to move resources to areas that would give us more impact such as health, agriculture, works and maintenance of our highways, job creation for our youths and women, artisanal miners, support for MSMEs, providing bailouts to critical sectors of the economy, among others."
He said that, in addition to the Crisis Management Committee, under the chair of the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning and the Presidential Task Force (PTF) under the chair of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), there was the Economic Sustainability Committee headed by the Vice President with focus on diverse economic sustainability programmes.