CBN unveils N50b COVID-19 stimulus
A special package to cushion the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic was on Wednesday unveiled by the Federal Government.
They include: N1 billion bailout for pharmaceutical companies; release of N10 billion to the Lagos State Government to battle the virus – the state has the highest number of victims; and $18.2 million to strengthen the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC). This cash is a grant from the Japanese government.
Finance Minister Mr. Zainab Ahmed announced the package during a meeting of members of the Executive with the National Assembly leadership.
Mrs. Ahmed solicited the support of lawmakers for the cut in the Budget 2020 expenditure to reflect the present economic downturn caused mainly by the Coronavirus pandemic.
The minister was accompanied to the meeting by Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Prince Clem Agba, Minister of Petroleum Resources (State), Timipre Sylva, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor Godwin Emefiele; Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mele Kyari, and Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters, Senator Babajide Omoworare.
Members of the National Assembly leadership that attended the meeting besides Senate President Ahmed Lawan and Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila, are Deputy Senate President Ovie Omo-Agege; Deputy Speaker, Idris Wase; Senate Leader Yahaya Abdullahi; Leader of the House Ado Doguwa; Deputy Senate Leader, Ajayi Boroffice; Senate Minority Leader Enyinnaya Abaribe; Minority Leader of the House Tony Elumelu; Senate Deputy Whip Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi and Senate Deputy Minority Whip, Philip Aduda.
Others are the Chairman, Senate Committee on Appropriations, Barau Jibrin and the Chairman, Senate Committee on Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions, Uba Sani.