The Federal Government has explained why it cannot share funds donated by the private sector towards fighting Coronavirus.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, gave the reasons on Tuesday when he featured on a Radio Nigeria programme, “Politics Nationwide”.
He said the funds were meant for the development of healthcare infrastructure in the country and cannot be used to provide palliatives during the lockdown.
Mohammed said this while responding to comments, requesting that part of the billions of naira donated by public-spirited individuals and private institutions be shared to the people to cushion the effect of the extended lockdown.
He maintained that the Presidential Task Force for the Control of Coronavirus was neither with the money nor in control of it, and could not share a penny from the funds to anyone.
“The private sector donors are not giving any cash to the federal government and they have made this clear to the people.
“They said they will support the fight against the pandemic by asking the government where they want healthcare infrastructure to be provided.
“What government has done is to request them to build a 30-bed isolation ward and a 10-bed Intensive Care Unit in each state in the country.
“In addition, the federal government has given them a list of equipment and commodities that will also be needed
“Therefore, the issue of using their donations to provide palliative cannot arise,” NAN quoted him as saying.
Mohammed added that Nigeria was leading and remains the best in the whole of Africa in the area of provision of palliative to citizens as the world battles the scourge.
Recall that Buhari on Monday announced that an additional 1 million families will get palliative measures during the lockdown.
The President maintained that already itemised palliative measures will be sustained.
“I have also directed that the current social register be expanded from 2.6 million households to 3.6