The Aliko Dangote Foundation owned by Africa’s richest man, Alhaji Aliko Dangote has donated N200m towards the on going efforts by the Federal Government to combat the spread of Coronavirus (Covid-19) .
The ADF’s intervention is considered the largest single donation by a corporate organisation in the country to contain the spread of coronavirus since a foreigner tested positive last month in Lagos.
It would be recalled that the Dangote Foundation also committed about N1 billion to the fight against the dreaded Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) in Africa.
The Foundation directly supported the Nigerian government’s Ebola containment efforts through strategic investments that built the resilience and strengthened Nigeria’s health system in a manner expected to endure beyond the Ebola crisis period.
Among others, the Foundation during the Ebola crisis supported the government through the followings: Provision of funding for the establishment of the National Ebola Emergency Operations Centre (EEOC) in Yaba, Lagos; provision of 12 units of Thermal Cameras across Nigeria’s International Airports with training for 160 staff/personnel of the Federal Ministry of Health, Port Health Services Department, on the use of the Thermal Cameras; provision of W.H.O-certified Personal Protective Equipment, PPEs, against Ebola; donation of $3 million donation to support Africa Union’s intervention against Ebola in West Africa, and also complete logistics support for the returnee volunteers on Ebola intervention across countries ravaged by Ebola.
President Muhammadu Buhari had then commended Dangote for what he described as “remarkable sacrifices in eradicating Ebola virus disease and polio in Nigeria.”
Zouera Youssoufou, the managing director/CEO, Aliko Dangote Foundation, who was represented by the health and nutrition programme officer, Maryam Shehu-Buhari, at a donor coordinating meeting in Abuja on Tuesday, said the donation was part of the Foundation’s cardinal objectives.
The Foundation is also the only and the wholly Nigerian donor that attended the meeting and made monetary pledge.
To this extent, she said the Dangote Foundation has earmarked N124million that will support facilities to help prevent, assess and respond to health events at Point of Entry to ensure National Health Security.
Youssoufou said other areas the Foundation is supporting include surveillance and epidemiology where facilities worth N36million will be provided by the Foundation to support government’s effort.
According to her, the ADF will also donate N48 million for case management training of health workers.
Speaking at the meeting facilitated by the World Bank, the bank’s country director represented by the operations manager, Kathleen Whimp, identified four thematic areas to tackling the spread of COVID 19. These are: Regular Communication with the public, contact tracing, training of volunteers and international co-operations.
Speaking also, the Director, Health Emergency Preparedness and Response of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) John Oladejo said some of the challenges, going forwarded included lack of enough isolation centres, contact tracing, training of volunteers, international cooperation, fake news and panic, among others.
Noel Chisaka of the Regional Disease Surveillance System Enhancement Project commended the Aliko Dangote Foundation for the contribution.