BREAKING: European Union Releases €50 Million To Nigeria, To Help In The Fight Against The Coronavirus Pandemic

The European Union, EU, has given Nigeria €50 million, to fight the coronavirus disease which has killed at least 10 people in the West African country.

The donation was announced when President Muhammadu Buhari received in audience, the EU Delegation, at the Council Chambers, State House, Abuja, on Tuesday.

The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, made this known via a tweet.

Adesina said that the Head of the EU Delegation at the event, Amb Ketil Karlsen, who announced the donation, also commended President Buhari, for extending the Lagos, Ogun, and Abuja lockdown.

Karlsen was quoted as describing Buhari’s address to the nation on Monday, as “powerful”, adding that, he took bold and necessary measures.

“EU gives Nigeria a grant of 50 million Euro, to fight Covid-19”, Adesina tweeted.

Also, the Personal Assistant on New Media to the President, Bashir Ahmad, said: “The European Union has donated a grant of €50 million, to the Federal Government, their contribution to Nigeria’s fight against #Covid19; the Head of the EU Delegation, Amb. Ketil Karlsen, announced the donation at a meeting with President @MBuhari today, in Abuja.”

Elsewhere, President Muhammadu Buhari, on Tuesday, in Abuja, commended the European Union, EU, for donating the sum of N21 billion (50 million Euros), to support Nigeria’s efforts at controlling the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

Receiving the EU Delegation to the country, led by Ambassador Ketil Karlsen, President Buhari said that the donation would go a long way in supporting Nigeria’s efforts at controlling and containing the virus to prevent community spread, as well as revitalise the national healthcare systems.

The President used the occasion to express the sincere condolences of the government and people of Nigeria to the EU-member countries and families, who lost their loved ones as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

He said: ‘‘Our thoughts and prayers are with the families, friends, and communities impacted. We are confident from history, that the resilience of Europe and our global collective, will enable us to emerge stronger from this tragedy.

‘‘Although, the EU is facing significant challenges due to this pandemic, I am indeed touched and grateful that the European Union still had the vision and foresight to remember its friends, partners, and allies across the world.’’

The President also lauded the EU, on the recent launch of the “Team Europe” package, to support countries in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic and its consequences.

He noted that the intervention, which is a collaboration between the EU, its member States, and financial institutions such as the European Investment Bank, and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, would go a long way in ensuring the impact of this pandemic is controlled and contained.

‘‘Indeed, this brotherly support will save millions of lives. Nigeria, Africa, and many beneficiary countries across the world will remain grateful for generations to come’’, he said.

The President told the Delegation, that his administration has done a lot to date, in the fight against Covid-19.

‘‘So far, the number of confirmed cases in Nigeria is 343. Our efforts as a government, have focused on controlling and containing the virus, to prevent community spread.

‘‘I want to assure you that in this fight, Nigerians are united, and by the grace of God, and the continued support from our partners, we shall succeed’’, he said.

In his remarks, Ambassador Karlsen described the donation channelled through the United Nations, UN Covid-19 Basket Fund, as so far the largest single contribution to the response in Nigeria, and the largest support that the EU is providing anywhere outside Europe.

‘‘We heard your call for assistance, and the EU has reacted swiftly, as a demonstration of our true partnership’’, he said.

The EU Ambassador congratulated the President for ‘‘a very powerful address to the nation, last night’’, stressing that, ‘‘indeed, the current situation is no joke, and we wish to commend you for taking bold and necessary measures’’.  

He also announced that the Union is mobilising other sources of funding, noting that, they have already paid 1.2 million Euros to UNICEF, and goods purchased through that funding, are expected in the country soon.  

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