VENTURES AFRICA – Reports have emerged that the World Bank plans to boost capacity development in Nigeria within the next five years with 27 projects costing about 785 billion naira ($5 billion).
Nigerian newspaper BusinessDay, said the development agency’s Country Director, Ms Marie-Francoise Marie-Nelly, dropped the “hint” on Tuesday at a workshop in the country.
“On the average, we are providing money in the range of $1.3 billion to $1.5 billion in a year and what we have now is a stock of projects,” Marie-Nelly said.
She stated that 60 percent of the funds would be invested in infrastructure, while the remaining 40 percent would be used to boost human capacity development.
Marie-Nelly specifically mentioned some targeted projects. “We also have three regional projects in the area of air transport, Niger River Basin in Niger State and the West Africa Agriculture Productivity Project, aimed at improving productivity in the agricultural sector and using the best techniques,’’ she said.
She disclosed that the World Bank has also budgeted $300 million for youth development in the country through the Youth Employment and Social Support Operation (YESSO) scheme.
She pointed out that the World Bank was “preparing a Youth Employment and Social Support Operation (YESSO) to support the provision of immediate work opportunities and skills development for unemployed youths and women from poor households.”
Nigeria’s primary healthcare was also not left out, especially in the area of polio eradication.
Recently, Microsoft founder and former world’s richest man, Bill Gates, also told UK’s Daily Mail he would be spending over a billion dollars per year on the eradication of polio in Nigeria, Pakistan and Afghanistan, the only remaining polio-endemic countries in the world.