President Muhammadu Buhari has commended the World Bank for unfolding a package which would see it spending 2.1 billion dollars in rebuilding ravaged North-eastern part of Nigeria occasioned by Boko Haram insurgency.
The President made the commendation on Tuesday at a meeting in Washington DC with representatives of the bank, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the World Health Organisation (WHO).
He, however, noted that apart from rebuilding the region in terms of infrastructure, priority must also be given to the resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), who now number over one million.
President Buhari urged the World Bank to send a team, which would work in concert with a team from the Federal Government, so that a proper assessment of needs could be done.
The World Bank would spend the 2.1 billion dollars through its IDA (International Development Agency), which gives low interest rates loans to government.
The first 10 years will be interest-free, while an additional 30 years will be at lower than capital market rate.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) gathered that the World Bank was eager to move in quickly and give out the loans in order to give succor to the people of North-East.
Meanwhile, WHO is also to invest 300 million dollars on immunisation against malaria in Nigeria, while the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will collaborate with Dangote Foundation to ensure that the country maintains its zero polio case record of the past one year.
“If the effort is sustained for another two years, Nigeria will be declared fully free of polio,’’ NAN quoted a Presidential source on Buhari’s entourage to the U.S. as saying.