NIGERIA – United Bank for Africa Plc (UBA) announced it was deploying US$14 million (N5 billion) through the UBA Foundation to combat COVID-19 in 20 African countries.

The Bank said the donation will provide significant and much needed support to Nigeria and 19 other African countries by supplying relief materials, critical care facilities, and financial support to governments.

“This is a time when we must all play our part. This global epidemic must bring citizens, governments and business leaders together – and quickly,” said UBA Group Chairman Tony O. Elumelu.

“As we see a rapidly increasing number of cases of the coronavirus in Nigeria and Africa, the private sector has to work hand in hand with various Governments, in stemming the spread of the global pandemic.”

“We commend the efforts of governments and we are keen to partner and contribute our resources to the collective effort, that will ensure the response to the pandemic is swift and effective,” Elumelu added.

The UBA support program will be allocated as follows:

  • N1 billion (US$2.8 million) to Lagos State Government in Nigeria
  • N500 million (US$1.4 million) to Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory, Abuja
  • N1 billion (US$2.8 million) to the remaining 35 states in Nigeria
  • N1.5 billion (US$4.2 million) to UBA’s presence countries in Africa
  • N1 billion (US$2.8 million) for Medical Centres with equipment and supplies
  • Free Telemedicine call centre facility

The pan-African bank said it will fund a medical centre immediately in Lagos, Nigeria, with beds for isolation and ICU facilities, managed and operated in partnership with Heirs Holdings’ healthcare subsidiary, Avon Medical Hospital.

In addition, UBA is providing a free telemedicine platform that is physician-led to provide direct access to medical advice to citizens, in compliance with social distancing requirements.

The respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus has claimed the lives of over 70 people across Africa with the level of infections skyrocketing above 2000 in the past few days.

Despite the small number of cases compared with other parts of the world, WHO has warned Africa to prepare for the worst.

Operating in 20 African countries and globally in the United Kingdom, the United States and France, the United Bank for Africa has a strong record of supporting its communities, through challenging times.