CACOVID Provides Activity Updates, Plans to Empower Youths, Businesses

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The Coalition Against COVID-19 (CACOVID), a private sector alliance formed for the sole purpose of eradicating the coronavirus pandemic in Nigeria, has announced updates of its fully owned activities as well as intentions to support the government’s efforts in rebuilding the nation’s economy.

This follows the mayhem caused by hoodlums, who hijacked the EndSARS protests, resulting in vandalism, loss of lives and disruption of the existing state of affairs.

While giving a breakdown of CACOVID’s expenditure, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Godwin Emefiele, noted that the coalition has received a total of N39.64 billion as donations from its private sector members and expended N43.272 billion on various projects, including N4.194 billion on building fully equipped isolation centres, N9.017 billion on medical equipment and supplies, N28.7 billion on food palliatives, as well as embarked on COVID-19 awareness drives across states in Nigeria, leveraging multiple communication channels.

Emefiele also disclosed that CACOVID has put in place certain measures as a supportive gesture to the government in facilitating the recovery process of the economy which has been adversely affected by the pandemic and the recent national unrest.

Commenting on this, Emefiele said: “These efforts represent some of the essential steps that are important in rebuilding trust and preventing future unrest within our communities. It would also complement the government’s efforts aimed at creating jobs for our youths and in strengthening the security apparatus in the country. More importantly, it would also prevent the challenges which have emanated from the protest, from affecting the long-term growth prospects for households and businesses in the country.”

The coalition has budgeted N100 billion to procure equipment and gadgets for the Nigerian Police Force (NPF) over the next two years, in addition to the rehabilitation of all damaged 44 police stations nationwide.

The sum, which is over N150 billion, will be deployed to set up and implement the Youth Development Programme to provide technical and vocational education to over four million Nigerian youths over the next next years.

On the successful conclusion of the programme, selected students will be eligible to receive loans to support their entrepreneurial pursuits. A total of N25 billion has been earmarked for this.

CACOVID, comprising the CBN and Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) as well as key stakeholders in the private sector, was created in March 2020 with the sole purpose of supporting the Nigerian government’s efforts in eradicating the coronavirus pandemic in Nigeria.

The coalition is tasked with pooling resources across industries to provide technical and operational support while providing funding and building advocacy through aggressive awareness drives.