The World Bank Group has announced the sum of $82 million funding support for Nigeria's ongoing fight against the dreaded COVID-10 pandemic.
The Breton Woods institution stated it would be providing direct and long-term financial support to the country over the next 15 months while also extending similar supports to other African countries in mitigating the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. It stated: "In Nigeria, the World Bank has already made $82 million available for immediate support in strengthening the public health response through the Regional Disease Surveillance Systems Enhancement Project (REDISSE).
"The World Bank has been asked to provide a multi-pronged package of support over the next six months to strengthen the country's preparedness for the immediate health crisis and provide the Federal Government with budget support for a pro-poor stimulus package and the long-term recovery."
"Efforts to protect livelihoods and support local economic activity over the next 18-24 months will be critical in mitigating the economic and human impact of the COVID-19 pandemic", the multilateral financial institution added.
This is even as the bank hinted that it had commenced discussions with the states and relevant federal agencies on how to best protect livelihoods of poor and vulnerable families, and support Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) to enable recovery."
It clarified: "Through the REDISSE project, about $10.6 million has already been committed to support the Nigeria Center for Disease Control in strengthening states' emergency operation center; building, renovating and providing equipment for treatment centers across 8 states; and bringing in essential medical supplies and drugs, testing kits, personal protective equipment for frontline health workers."