The IMF has shipped some digital trucks of money to Nigeria towards helping our nation on the paralysis of Covid-19. I congratulate Mr. President and his team on this loan. Simply, this is a very necessary loan, and I challenge our leaders to ensure the $3.4 billion is judiciously used to serve the Nigerian people. (You can read more about this loan here)
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Tuesday approved a $3.4 billion emergency funding as requested by Nigeria, to help the country cushion the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on her economy.
The executive board of the fund gave the approval under the Rapid Financing Instrument to support the government’s efforts to address the devastating impact of COVID-19.
It is the single largest aid for any African country facing the pandemic. The fund had earlier approved $1 billion for Ghana.
On April 6, the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, said at the launching of the N500 billion fiscal stimulus measures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic that the IMF request was part of a number options the country was exploring raise funds to salvage its economy.
Kano is under severe virus warfare; it needs help just as Lagos, if not more. As Mr President sends the trucks of items to support Kano, he needs to send the Director of National Orientation Agency (NOA) also. I have seen videos where Kano residents were in football games, when the instruction was for everyone to be hibernating. Now, that indiscipline is going to put our healthcare workers into a panic mode. Unless we help the government, the government cannot serve us well; disregarding medical directives is never a smart strategy.
Risks to our healthcare workers continue to mount even as Nigeria records the highest number of infections. The nation recorded new 185 infections on Tuesday. To help our doctors and nurses, people should listen to simple instructions in Nigeria. We need our healthcare workers to return home safely to their families.
Nigeria’s health minister, Osagie Ehinare, on April 23, said more than 40 health workers had tested positive for coronavirus. The figure represented roughly 4.6 per cent of the country’s then 873 confirmed cases.
The minister, who stated this during the daily press briefing by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, added that apart from the over 40 health workers, there are others “who have been quarantined in the last 2 weeks due to exposure and have not been able to contribute to efforts of the health sector.”
This loan should address healthcare matters in addition to the economy. No backdoor bailout. No briefcase bailout. We only want HELP to Nigerians; that is what IMF expects.