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Over 20, 000 Lagos indigent families, MSMEs to get $20m COVID-19 economic stimulus

The Lagos State Government has launched a $20 million Coronavirus (COVID-19) Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus (Lagos CARES) programme for poor and vulnerable households in the state and to expand food security services in the State.

The programme which is also to support Micro, Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (MSMEs), to be  implemented for 24 months, is being funded through $750 million facility secured from the World Bank by the Federal Government for Nigeria-CARES project. Other states also benefited from the stimulus programme.

Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, while launching the project  on Wednesday, said the programme launch was a major milestone in the state’s efforts to combat the negative impact of the Coronavirus Pandemic on households, livelihood, food security and businesses.

He said further: “As a responsive Government, we are constantly working round the clock to provide interventions, strategies and actions to alleviate the burden of the pandemic on the majority of our “at risk” people, especially in the areas of food security and health management.

“This is why I am delighted to launch the Nigeria COVID-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus (N-CARES) Programme for Results (P4R) in Lagos State.

This N-CARES programme is an integral part of the national approach, adopted to alleviate the burden of the COVID-19 pandemic, and enhance the well-being of our people.

The Lagos State CARES Programme will be implemented between 2021 and 2023, and will provide economic relief and recovery support to identified vulnerable persons.”

According the government, The N-CARE programme will encompass three key result areas:  increasing cash transfers and livelihood support to poor and vulnerable households; increasing food security and safe functioning of food supply chains for poor households, and facilitating the recovery MSMEs, while strengthening institutional support for coordination and delivery.

During the 24-month period of implementation in the state, the programme will directly support 20,843 households and indirectly support 125,058 individuals.

There will also be interventions in 69 markets while a minimum of 2,512 MSMEs will be supported, specifically targeting women and youth.

To effectively implement the scheme, Sanwo-Olu had set up State CARES Steering Committee (SCSC) made up of state cabinet members and policy heads to oversee the programme. He called on the committee to effectively implement the scheme. He said: “The SCSC will work with the State CARES Coordinating Unit (SCCU) while the SCCU will work closely and relate directly with the delivery platforms of the three result areas for result monitoring and coordination.

“I have confidence in the ability of the members of the State’s CARES Steering Committee (SCSC) who have been part of the main drivers of our agenda for greater Lagos.

“I would like to remind the committee members not to lose sight of the T.H.E.M.E.S Agenda of the State Government as they work on the three result areas.”

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