As Nigeria struggles to cope with the coronavirus pandemic that has severely impacted on the economy, the nation has been seeking for technical and financial assistance from international multilateral organizations, financially stable countries, and corporate entities among others.
This is because of the financial crisis faced by the country, which is worsened by the crude oil price crash as it contributes about 90% of the nation’s foreign exchange earnings.
The United States, which is the country is the hardest-hit country by the coronavirus pandemic in terms of casualty figure has been collaborating and financially supporting Nigeria in the fight against the virus.
The US mission in Nigeria says that the country’s support to Nigeria in the global response to COVID-19 now stands at $32.8 million with more in the pipeline.
This was disclosed by the US Ambassador to Nigeria, Ambassador Mary Beth Leonard, during an interview with channels television.
The US Ambassador said, ‘’Yes our 2 presidents spoke together, you will recall that President Buhari was the first African President that President Trump met and so I’m sure they were pleased to renew that contact’’.
Ambassador Beth Leonard pointed out what the United State government has been doing to help Nigeria during this crisis.
She said, ‘’The US government spent $237 million specifically on COVID-19 and here in Nigeria we have spent up to $32.8 million and this is actually almost an equivalent volume of money that is still in the pipeline as we prioritize and figure out where we can have positive effect’’.
The US envoy to Nigeria said that Trump and Buhari discussed how the 2 countries have each reacted to the pandemic and the equipment needs of the countries. She pointed out that she was informed by her colleagues in Washington, that they are working on the logistics of how to help Nigeria with its equipment needs which could be in the coming days.
She said they are working with United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Centre for Disease Control (CDC) and research institutes are partnering with Nigeria in the provision of some of this equipment as no country can do it alone.
According to her, the United States has for a long time been international leaders in health assistance as they have incredible relationships with other countries and their health systems.
Going further she said, ‘’You know in the last 20 years, the US assistance to Nigeria is a little over $8 billion, more than $5 billion of that was in the health. So international health assistance is something that we do and something that you will keep on doing when you come to a historic pandemic like COVID-19.’’