Population is a challenge in fighting Coronavirus in Nigeria – Osinbajo


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Nigeria’s Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo has said the country’s population of over two hundred million poses a major challenge in tackling the dreaded COVID-19 pandemic ravaging the West African Nation.


Osinbajo, further explained that there is progress in managing the issues in bits and smaller measure through the states. This has enabled authorities to reassess responses across the thirty-six states of the nation and adjust where necessary.


Vice President Osinbajo said this in Abuja on Wednesday in a conference themed “How Africa’s Informal Sector Reacts to COVID-19”, hosted online by Africa.com.


In a statement by Vice President Osinbajo issued through his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Laolu Akande, said, Nigeria has the advantage of being able to manage her problems in smaller measure, by dividing them, because she runs a Federation.


According to the statement , Mr. Hakeem Bello-Osagie, a Harvard Business School Senior Lecturer of Business Administration, and the CEO of Africa.com, Teresa Clarke, moderated the discussions with participation by several thousand who logged in across the world.


At the online conference, others in attendance alongside Prof Osinbajo included President Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana; Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna; Ahmed Mushfiq Mobarak, Professor of Economics, Yale University; and Amandla Ooko-Ombaka, Senior Engagement Manager, McKinsey & Co.

Vice President Osinbajo added that, providing funds and support to small businesses operating in the informal sector should be of high importance for all economies aiming at reducing any adverse effect of COVID-19 on the economy.

Osinbajo said, “perhaps we have the advantage of being able to manage our problems in smaller measure, or by dividing them, of course, we run a federation, which means that Gov. Nasir could do some very excellent work there in Kaduna, Lagos could do some excellent work, Ogun state and others could also do some excellent work.

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“But of course, by the very nature of this pandemic, it also means that you run the risk of everything going south if some state isn’t doing as well as it ought to.

“I think, in the end, we have that advantage that we are able to almost isolate responses, and even look at best practices across the various states and try and ramp up wherever we find that there are deficiencies.”

In addressing some of the strategies currently being executed to alleviate the impact of the pandemic on the economy, Vice President Osinbajo said “We have done a lot on conditional transfers especially within the context of our social investment policies, but we are now looking at how to possibly enlarge the scope of that and do more.

Aside from the lockdown, just the disruption in the economy has meant that the daily paid worker simply has no means of working and many laid off.”


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