Dar es Salaam — Financial institutions and other private companies yesterday donated up to Sh1.2 billion to the government to aid its efforts against the Covid-19 pandemic.
Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa received the donation at his office in Dar es Salaam. A bigger chuck of the money was donated by UBA Bank (Tanzania) which gave Sh230 million. Karimjee Jivanjee Limited and its subsidiaries donated Sh200 million. The company further pledged to cover maintenance costs for all vehicles involved in the operation for a week. CRDB Bank offered Sh150 million and NMB Bank Plc Sh100 million.
"This is a major war and we need to join our forces to ensure the virus doesn't spread further in the country. I, therefore, urge every Tanzanian to show support to the government," said the Prime Minister.
UBA Bank managing director Usman Isiaka said the donation was part of the $14 million relief fund which UBA Group, through its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) arm UBA Foundation, has provided to all the governments of the 20 African countries.
"We believe we are in this challenging situation together and we must all make our modest contribution towards the fight against coronavirus for us to stay safe," he said in a statement availed to The Citizen.
Speaking during the donation, UBA Bank's non - Executive Director Ms Farhiya Warsame said; "Covid- 19 is a global crisis that cannot be left to the government alone to fight. Responsible corporate citizens and well-meaning individuals need to support all initiatives and efforts of the government as we are all in it together."
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Until yesterday, health minister Ummy Mwalimu said Tanzania had 13 people who have tested positive for coronavirus. Onother 245 people are under quarantine.
Other companies that teamed up to support the efforts include the Karimjee family which donated a generator (KVA 180) worth Sh75 million for a similar purpose. The Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Agriculture (TCCIA) donated equipment worth Sh5 million, including 50 bedsheets, 10 mattresses and 400 bottles of hand sanitizers.
Others include; the Association of Tanzania Oil and Gas Service Providers (ATOGS) through Advent Construction which donated equipment and drinking water worth Sh150 million. The company also pledged to finance adverts designed to raise public awareness on coronavirus for free for four months.
The Confederation of Tanzania Industries (CTI) donated 1000 water tanks (of 250 litres each) worth Sh25 million, while GS1 Tanzania donated 1, 600 bottles of hand sanitizers worth Sh4 million.
Others are Tanzania Oxygen who gave Sh158 million, Mount Meru with hand sanitizers worth Sh2 million and Aga Khan Hospital which gave equipment worth Sh10.2 million. Oryx Gas Tanzania pledged to supply gas worth Sh25 million to hospitals and other health facilities for domestic use while Tredea Cosmetics donated hand sanitizers worth Sh1.6 million. The Association of Mamalishe-Ilala donated equipment worth Sh2 million.
Globally, the coronavirus infections have reached 600,000 as Italy and the US are reported to surpass China's record as the first country to report the coronavirus outbreak in December last year, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
Prime Minister Majaliwa, who is also the chairperson of the National Covid-19 Committee reiterated the government's commitment to putting in place various preventive measures so as to stop further spread of the viral infection in the country.