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NGF, NCDC sign MoU on World Bank’s N3.7bn COVID-19 support to states

NGF, NCDC sign MoU on World Bank’s N3.7bn COVID-19 support to states
June 25
12:25 2020
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The Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF) and the National Centre for Diseases Control (NCDC) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on the World Bank’s N3.7 billion COVID-19 response support to the states in the country including the federal capital territory (FCT).

The MoU titled, ‘Nigeria COVID-19 Preparedness and Response Project (NIGERIA CoPREP)’ was jointly signed by Kayode Fayemi, the governor of Ekiti state, and Chikwe Ihekweazu, the director-general of NCDC, on Wednesday.

Fayemi, who also doubles as the chairman of NGF, commended NCDC for helping the states in tackling the COVID-19 pandemic with expertise, technical assistance and partnership.

He said that the fund will serve as a vehicle for the enhancement of health infrastructure particularly the primary healthcare centres at the sub-national level.

Fayemi also thanked the World Bank for being a great partner to the NGF, adding that Ekiti state alone has 10 ongoing World Bank projects.

“For us, we see the World Bank and a partner and not as a donor. In any case, it’s our money that is being given back but its something that they are doing genuinely with a commitment to the development in our country,” he said.

Ihekweazu disclosed that each state and the FCT will receive N100 million, which would be paid directly to a dedicated account of each state government, after meeting the necessary requirements.

He said the objectives of the fund was to prevent, detect, and response to the COVID-19 pandemic at the states level in the country.

“Since last year we have already said that our focus for this year would be on the states. Even before this outbreak, our strategic direction in NCDC was to support the state to build health facilities,” Ihekweazu said.

“We have come to that realisation that we have to invest in the health sector. We can do that at the federal level alone. We have to do it at both states and even local government level.”

In her remarks, Kathleen Whimp, World Bank operations manager, said the signing of the MoU was an opportunity for NCDC to reach states better and to strengthen its engagement with the states.

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