Gboyega Akosile, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor of Lagos State has informed the public that the Lagos State Government, in partnership with First Bank of Nigeria Ltd, has launched five billion naira (N5bn) Post-Coronavirus Recovery Support capital for the education sector to support low-cost private schools across the state in mitigating the negative impact of the pandemic.
According to a statement by the governor’s Chief Press Secretary, the intervention fund, which targets over 2,000 private schools, was formally launched by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Friday held at the Banquet Hall in the State House, Alausa.
The statement said the loan scheme would be provided to two categories of applicants: Micro-Enterprise and Small and Medium Enterprise, adding that those in the ME category would receive a sum of no more than N500,000, while those in SME would get N5m.
The Lagos State Employment Trust Fund collaborated with First Bank to facilitate the matching fund, which will be given as loans to schools and vocational education centres across the state.
Sanwo-Olu stated that the intervention was part of the state government’s sustainable solutions to limit the socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on both residents and businesses.
“It is no longer debatable that education is one of the sectors that are severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, with schools and vocational learning centres shut since March when we took the tough decisions meant to disrupt the spread of the virus.
“Given the incidence of the closure of schools in response to the pandemic, it would not be out of context to note that the challenges presently faced by these schools would increase significantly”, he said,
Dr Adesola Adeduntan, the Chief Executive Officer, First Bank, noted that the organisation went into the partnership with recognition of the role education played towards the growth of the economy.