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Senate Committee on Health on Tuesday rejected proposal by the Federal Ministry of Health to borrow $200 million to buy mosquito nets and Malaria medicine for 13 states across the country.

The Senators present at the budget defence of the Ministry of Health wondered how the Ministry came up with such proposal despite the N450 million provided in 2022 budget to tackle Malaria in the ministry.

Senator Abba Moro and Senator Adelere Oriolowo specifically kicked against the proposal to budget $200 million for mosquito nets and malaria medicines.

The Chairman of the Committee, Senator Ibrahim Oloriegbe, who could not hide his displeasure with the development, said that the World Bank should not dictate to Nigeria where to buy the mosquito nets.

Oloriegbe said the idea of borrowing money from World Bank is “money and job for the boys” by somebody in Washington DC, adding that its consultancy services provided at the lower level of state and local government.

He asked, “they can’t borrow us the money and still tell us where to buy the mosquito nets, it is like it is job for the boys, this can be sourced locally.”

Trouble started when the Ministry told the lawmakers that $200 million will be borrowed for mosquito nets and malaria medicine.

Defending the $200 million loan for mosquito nets, the Executive Director, National Primary Heal Care Development Agency, PHCDA, Faisal Shuaib, explained that the money was meant for 13 vulnerable states which cover 208 local governments in the country.

He noted that the $200 million was for importation and local production of mosquito nets, adding that World Bank mandated Nigeria to buy it from specific producer.

Not satisfied by the defence of the Ministry, the Chairman demanded all documents related to the $200 million loan from the World Bank for the malaria medicine and mosquito nets.

He added that, “We know that we have challenges, but that does not mean we should borrow for malaria medicine.”

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