By: Joy Odor/Abuja
The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) has announced $243 million in additional assistance to support Nigeria in reaching its development goals.
The new funding will support activities to build a healthier population with $165 million, including assisting with malaria control, supporting maternal and child health, family planning, eradication of tuberculosis, and nutrition initiatives.
According to the USAID Mission Director, Mr Stephen Haykin another $25 million will focus on strengthening basic literacy and education in the north, while $22 million will help drive inclusive and sustainable agriculture-led economic growth.
In addition, he said, USAID’s programs will focus on broad-based economic growth, resilience and the development of safely-managed water supply and sanitation services in urban areas.
Mr Haykin noted that $21million in funding will be dedicated to activities aimed at strengthening political competition and consensus-building, promoting good governance and for efforts to strengthen civil society organizations.
The USAID’s Mission Director opined that the assistance is a continuation of the United States’ commitment to support the development goals outlined in the Development Objective Assistance Agreement signed with the Government of Nigeria in 2015.
“This contribution underscores the continued importance of the relationship between Nigeria and the United States.
“Our strong partnership with Nigeria, its institutions and its people will help their efforts to improve health, education, agriculture and governance systems where they are needed most throughout the country” He stressed.
USAID’s Mission Director disclosed that the additional funding brings the total U.S. government assistance provided to the Nigerian people under the five-year agreement to $1.422 billion.
“USAID collaborates with the Nigerian Ministry of Budget and National Planning, the Nigerian Ministries of Health, Agriculture, Power and Education, and state-level government counterparts, among others, to structure the estimated $2.45 billion agreement, which runs through the end of 2020” Mr Haykin ended.