The presidency has revealed reasons President Muhammadu Buhari refused to approve the N15 billion request by the Kano State governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, to fight Coronavirus in the state.
The president had in March approved N10billion and N5billion to Lagos and Ogun states respectively to support the fight against Coronavirus.
A few days after Kano State started recording COVID-19 cases, Mr Ganduje had also requested for similar financial support to the tune of N15billion from the Federal Government to fight the spread of the virus in the state.
9news Nigeria reports that the governor’s request stirred up controversies among Nigerians.
Speaking on a Wazobia FM’s live Radio chat, ‘As E Dey Hot’, monitored in Kano on Thursday, a senior presidential adviser on media and publicity, Femi Adesina, said the President turned down governors request for simply prioritising money over preliminary proactive logistics.
According to him, the Federal Government decided to offer Lagos and Ogun financial assistance after having been convinced that these states had rolled out plans and mobilized their resources to fight the virus.
He added that Lagos State only requested for technical, manpower and facility support from the Federal Government, not financial support.
Thus, according to him, the Buhari government felt obliged to lend a financial hand not because it asked for, but because it was convinced it should.
Mr Adesina further explained that all the governors directly asking for money at the start of their COVID-19 crisis may not get it.
“They said it didn’t take 30 days for Lagos to get support, no! It was the work that Lagos was doing that the Federal Government saw and said this state needs help and then helped Lagos State [with N10billion].
“Any other state that is also doing its work and is not grumbling, is not complaining and is not saying ‘bring money, bring money’, the Federal Government will do all that is necessary to assist [that state with the same financial support as Lagos State].
“Technical support is very important and Lagos State brought technical support before it got financial support.
“That was why the president sent technical support to Kano State, which the government felt was what the state needed most at that material time.”