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World Bank Happy with NG-CARES Implementation Results in Most States

  Prof. Foluso Okunmadewa, the World Bank Task Team Leader for Nigeria COVID-19 Action Recovery and
Economic Stimulus (NG-CARES), has expressed happiness over the level of implementation of the Stimulus in most states.

Okunmadewa made the bank’s position known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Friday in Abuja, on the
sidelines of a meeting with selected states, in preparation for the first assessment of results under the NG-CARES programme.

He said “most of the state have gotten results. We are quite happy about it. It is only a few states that were a bit late in disbursing
resources to their delivery platforms that may not have gotten results that are substantial, based on our own check as at this point in time.

“So, to us, that is good. Usually for a programme like this, it gets that kind of response at the beginning but immediately after the first
assessment and the results are made public and known to everyone, all the other states that are a bit slow or lagging behind will pickup.

“We have seen that in every other programmes before.”

The team leader explained that NG-CARES is an emergency operation meant to support the poor and vulnerable people in terms of responding
to the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

He also said that states are expected to produce some results which they would get reimbursement after the assessment of the project.

“So, the first assessment is going to happen in the next couple of weeks and so what we are doing as partner to the states and the federal government
is to coach them and to see what results they have, how robust are the results and how it should be presented.

“This is because the people who are going to do the assessment and verify the results are International Independent Verification Agents
who have been engaged to go round the states of the federation in a very short time.

“The agents are to collect results achieved on the basis of which reimbursements will be made. We have about nine states on the last batch.”

Also, Dr Abdulkarim Obaje, the National Coordinator of the Federal CARES Support Unit, World Bank-assisted NG-CARES programme,
said everything was on top gear for the first visit of the Independent Verification Agent to the states and the FCT.

He said “what the World Bank and Federal Government are doing now is to check the reports, the results that the states claimed they have
achieved over the past one and half years.

“This will enable us to see those that need strengthening in terms of packaging their documentation and those that require additional
funding from their state governments because there is a protocol that everybody must adhere to.”

On her part, the Adamawa Coordinator of NG-CARES, Aishatu Bello, said the World Bank and the Federal Support Team have been
assisting the state technically to achieve the objectives of the programme.

She expressed optimism that the meeting would help states to achieve more results so that they would get reimbursement from
the World Bank to implement more programmes.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports that the NG-CARES Programme development objective is to expand access to livelihood support and food security services, as well as grants for the poor and vulnerable households.(NAN)

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