US Supports Nigeria’s Fight against Poverty with Additional $227.3m

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Alex Enumah in Abuja

The United States of America has announced the release of $227.3million to help fight poverty in Nigeria.

The sum which was announced by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) was in addition to the US developmental assistance to support the five-year $2.3 billion agreement signed with the Nigerian Government in 2015.

According to the US, the additional fund now brings the total provided under the agreement to $702 million.

In a statement from the Public Affairs Section of the US Mission in Abuja, the new funding would continue to help Nigeria reduce extreme poverty by stimulating inclusive economic growth, promoting a healthier, more-educated population, and strengthening good governance.

“Today, we are pleased to announce new funding under the agreement signed with the Nigerian Government in 2015 to provide better access to education and health services and promote democracy and economic growth,” the US Ambassador to Nigeria, Stuart Symington, was quoted as saying in the statement.

He added: “With the Nigerian Government’s leadership, we know this funding will significantly improve the wellbeing of Nigerians.”

The agreement, which would run through 2020, is structured by the USAID in collaboration with the Ministry of Budget and National Planning; Ministries of Health, Agriculture, Power, and Education and their counterparts at the state-level.

In addition to development assistance funding, the US is providing humanitarian assistance to people affected by the ongoing conflict and severe food insecurity in the North-eastern part of Nigeria and throughout the Lake Chad Basin.

The US has provided more than $291 million in humanitarian assistance in the 2016 fiscal year and continues to be the single largest bilateral humanitarian donor to the region.