The federal government has proposed to establish a N500 billion COVID-19 Crisis Intervention Fund. The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, disclosed this Saturday at a meeting with the leadership of the National Assembly.
She said the proposed intervention fund would be sourced from the federal government’s various special accounts, grants being expected and loans from multilateral institutions.
The minister said the fund would be utilised to upgrade healthcare facilities as well as provide intervention to states.
“What we are proposing is an establishment of a N500 billion COVID-19 Crisis Intervention Fund,” the minister said.
“This Fund that we are proposing, that should be created, will involve mopping up resources from various special accounts that the government as well as the Federation have, to be able to pull this N500 billion,” the minister said. “Our general view is that this crisis intervention fund is to be utilised to upgrade healthcare facilities as earlier identified.
“The Federal Government also needs to be in a position to improve health care facilities not only in the states but to provide intervention to the states,” Mrs Ahmed said.
She told the lawmakers that the Fund, if approved, would also take care of special Public Work Programmes currently being implemented by the National Directorate of Employment(NDE).
“We know that there will be a need for the parliament to agree and approve the taking of loans from these special accounts and we will be coming back with a proposed bill in that regard that will define what the fund will be used for,” the minister said.