World Bank approves $20m post-COVID-19 stimulus fund for Ekiti
‘FERMA to spend N60 billion on road rehabilitation nationwide’
Ekiti State Governor Kayode Fayemi, yesterday, said that $20 million had been approved by the World Bank for the state to enable it to execute projects that will cushion the effect of COVID-19 pandemic on indigenes.
He said the fund, which would be released under a novel programme tagged ‘Nigeria CARES’, would be deployed to undertake projects in rural communities to reduce poverty and propel local economy.
The governor disclosed this in Ado-Ekiti during a programme organised by the Ekiti State Social and Community Development Agency (EKSCDA) to review community projects executed in Ekiti since 2009.
Fayemi, represented by his Special Adviser on Development Partnership, Mrs. Margaret Fagboyo, lauded the partnering communities for believing in his rural development policy by contributing over N200 million as counterpart-funding to boost the Community and Social Development Programme (CSDP).
“I am happy to inform our people that the World Bank has approved a new project called the Nigeria CARES as a post- COVID-19 intervention grant for Ekiti State. The grant is in excess of $20 million as a stimulus fund to cushion the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic in our various communities,” he said.
RELATEDLY, Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Federal Road Maintenance Agency (FERMA), Mr. Femi Bamisile, has disclosed that roads across the country would be rehabilitated following Federal Government’s approval of N60 billion to the agency.
The lawmaker, representing Ekiti South Federal Constituency II, charged the Federal Government to roll out stimulus and palliative packages to cushion the effects of the current hike in petrol pump price and electricity tariff on Nigerians, whom he said, have not fully recovered from the adverse effect of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Bamisile, who spoke in Omuo-Ekiti, headquarters of Ekiti East Local Council, yesterday, during an empowerment programme he organised for 500 widows to mark his 55th birthday, also commissioned three ICT and two health centres at Emure and Omuo-Ekiti as constituency projects.
He said that the gesture would enhance healthcare delivery and education of the youths.
“I can assure Nigerians that there will be massive rehabilitation of federal roads across Nigeria soon. A sum of N60 billion has been earmarked by FERMA for the project.
“It is N10 billion per geo-political zone. Over N2 billion is to be spent on roads infrastructure in Ekiti alone. I want to assure our people that they will experience the total transformation of all roads across the country,” he said.
Bamisile disclosed that eight federal roads out of the 12 in Ekiti were currently being rehabilitated by FERMA and the Federal Ministry of Works.
The lawmaker, who described the increase in petrol price and electricity tariff as tough and painful policies, said: “Though difficult, but the government knew why it took the action. Nigeria will get better if you pay more for petrol without scarcity and higher tariff with improved electricity supply. But stimulus packages must be rolled out to cushion the effects.”
He said N700 million would be expended on solar power in his federal constituency to boost power supply in the area and improve commercial activities.