Nasir El-Rufai, Kaduna state Governor has disclosed how he secured a $350 million loan from the World bank using pictures of dilapidated schools.
El-Rufai made this disclosure at the Send-Forth of World Bank’s outgoing Country Director, Rachid Ben Messaoud.
Nigeria Governors’ Forum organized the get-together which took place at Transcorp Hotel, Abuja
The Kaduna State Governor revealed how he took several pictures of all the dilapidated schools in the state and made an album. It was this album he presented to the World Bank Country Director, Rachid Ben Messaoud, who after several meetings approved the loan.
“El-Rufai in his statement said, “I had a problem and I didn’t know what to do, I took pictures of all the schools and converted the images into an album. Then I approached Ben Messaoud who asked me what I wanted to do.”
The Kaduna Governor also revealed the difficulties he encountered before he could eventually secure the loan for his state.
“It took almost nine months before the funds were approved and it took the national assembly almost two years to consent and give assent to the loan”.
Chairman of Nigeria’s Governor Forum, Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti state also joined in singing the praise of the outgoing World Bank country Director highlighting the vital role Messaoud played to ensure the fluctuating dollar was stabilized.
“You are not the first country director of the World Bank in Nigeria but you are the first that is receiving this treatment from a set of governors,” Fayemi said.
“Today you have turned the narrative around. When you came, the dollar hovered between 28 and 36 but you helped the country and enhanced eligibility on World Bank assistance and helped to simplify the procurement processes. But there is still more to be done.”
Messaoud in response said he became inspired by “Nigeria’s diversity, especially its fun and loving people” and just did the best he could to improve the nation better than he met it.