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FG to Borrow $40m for Health Services

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malaria treatment
  • FG to Borrow $40m for Health Services

The Federal Government is finalising arrangement to access $40million from the Global Financing Facility for every woman and child (GFF). Half of the sum is to address reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health (RMNCAH) issues in the North East.

Senior Health Specialist at the World Bank, Dr Olowole Odutolu who disclosed this in Abuja, explained that the $20 million was already programmed as a grant within the additional financing for the Nigeria State Health Investment Project (IDA of $125million) for the North East.

He noted that government had defined a platform to actively engage all partners, including the civil society and private sector. According to him, the GFF provides a roadmap for countries to develop and monitor the implementation of an RMNCAH platform for ending preventable deaths and improving the health of women, children and adolescents.

Also speaking, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo who expressed government’s commitment to encouraging more private sector participation in the health sector, observed that over 60 per cent of the healthcare needs of the country were provided by the sector.

Meabnwhile, the nation, will today, begin a two-week mass vaccination campaign to protect more than four million children against measles outbreak in the conflict-ridden region.

The programme, championed by the Federal Ministry of Health (FMoH) through the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) with support from the World Health Organisation (WHO), United States Centre for Disease Control (CDC) and the United Nation Children Fund (UNICEF), targets all children aged six months to 10 years in accessible areas in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states.

Also yesterday, the Chairman of Dangote Foundation, Aliko Dangote, called on the Kano government to audit funds released to state for polio immunisation last year to ensure accountability.

He gave the charge during a video conference involving co-chair of Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Bill Gates, Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje and his Kaduna counterpart, Nasir El-Rufai, officials of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency and development partners in Kano.

In a related development, United Nations Under-Secretary and Executive Director of United Nations Population Funds (UNFPA), Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin, stressed that it was vital to protect sexual reproductive health rights of women and girls in crisis situations like Boko Haram insurgency that claimed several and property in the region.

Osotimehin spoke in Maiduguri during a courtesy visit to Governor Kashim Shettima at the Government House to assess the state of Internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the state.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

Economy

FG to Partly Fund Six Rail Projects Connecting All Regions

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FG to Partly Fund Six Rail Projects Connecting All Regions

The Federal Government will pay a total sum of N71 billion to partly fund six rail projects connecting all regions of the country.

In the report obtained from the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, the six rail projects marked for development this year are Lagos-Kano rail line (ongoing), Calabar-Lagos (ongoing), and Ajaokuta-Itakpe-Aladja (Warri).

Others are the Port Harcourt-Maiduguri railway, the new Kano-Katsina-Jibiya-Maradi line in Niger Republic and the Abuja-Itakpe and Aladja-Warri Port and refinery/Warri new harbour.

The Buhari administration will also spend N15.1 billion on the development of safety and security of critical projects, airport certification, runway construction, terminal building, among others in the aviation sector in 2021.

Last week, Rotimi Amaechi, Minister of Transportation, said the Lagos-Kano line would be connected from the Ibadan end of the Lagos-Ibadan railway and would cost $5.3 billion.

We are waiting for the Chinese government and bank to approve the $5.3bn to construct the Ibadan-Kano. What was approved a year ago was the contract,” the minister said.

He added, “The moment I announced that the Federal Government had awarded a contract of $5.3bn to CCECC (China Civil Engineering and Construction Corporation) to construct Ibadan-Kano, people assumed the money had come in; no.

“We have not got the money, which is a year after we applied for the loan. We have almost finished the one of Lagos-Ibadan. If we don’t get the loan now, we can’t commence.”

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Economy

FG Launches E-ticketing Platform to Deepen Train Usage and Convenience

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FG Launches E-ticketing Platform to Deepen Train Usage and Convenience

In a bid to improve the usage and enhance the convenience of train transport in Nigeria, the Federal Government on Thursday announced the launching of the Electronic Ticketing platform for the Kaduna-Abuja rail services.

The N900 million E-ticketing platform was introduced by the Minister of Transportation, Chibuike R. Amaechi, and the Nigerian Railway Corporation.

Amaechi said the new platform would improve efficiency, promote accountability, reduce leakage and enhance economic growth, as well as save time.

The E-ticketing platform was a Public-Private Partnership project done in conjunction with Secure ID Solutions, who provide and would manage the system for 10 years in an effort to recoup its investment before the Nigerian Railway Corporation take charge.

Kofo Akinkugbe, the Chief Executive Officer, Secure ID Solutions, said as the new E-platform issued 25,000 tickets after a successful pilot test on Thursday.

Potential Travelers can book via three ways:

1. Mobile app
2. Website
3. POS or Cash at the station

A validator would be used to scan the ticket barcode to ascertain its authenticity before boarding.

Amaechi further announced that self-service ticket vending machines at various train stations would be introduced soon.

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Economy

Nigeria’s Excess Crude Account (ECA) Balance Now $72.4 Million

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Zainab Ahmed Finance Minister

Nigeria’s Excess Crude Account (ECA) Balance Now $72.4 Million

The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, on Thursday said Nigeria’s Excess Crude Account (ECA) stood at $72,411,197.80 as of January 20th, 2021.

The minister disclosed this at the first National Economic Council (NEC) meeting of the year presided over by Yemi Osinbajo, Vice President and had in attendance State Governors, Federal Capital Territory Minister, Central Bank Governor and other senior government officials.

Ahmed said “Excess Crude Account (ECA), balance as at 20th January, 2021, $72,411,197.80; Stabilization Account, balance as at 19th January, 2021, N28,800,711,295.37; Natural Resources Development Fund Account, balance as at 19th January 2021, N95, 830,729,470.82.”

The minister also said President Muhammadu Buhari has approved N6.45 billion for the setting up of gas plants in 39 locations nationwide in an effort to increase COVID-19 treatment.

What is Excess Crude Account (ECA)

Excess Crude Account (ECA) is an account used to save the disparity in the market price of crude oil and budgeted price of crude oil as stipulated in the Federal Government Appropriation Bill.

Key Takeaways of Excess Crude Account (ECA)

  • Excess Crude Account (ECA) was established in 2004 by the Federal Government to stabilize Nigeria’s economy and smooth out the effect of crude oil fluctuation on Africa’s largest economy.
  • The ECA rose to its highest of $20 billion in November 2008 during the global oil boom when prices were above $100 per barrel.
  • Controversy, allegations of corruption, and uncertain performance have trailed the ECA since creation.
  • The balance plunged from $20 billion in 2008 to $72.4 million in January 2021.

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