By Adedapo Adesanya
Nigeria has received the $3.4 billion emergency loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
IMF Managing Director, Ms Kristalina Georgieva, confirmed to CNBC Africa in an interview that the $3.4 billion loan had been credited to the account of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
The funds had been approved under the Rapid Financing Instrument by the Executive Board of the IMF on April 28, to address challenges arising from the economic impact of the COVID -19 pandemic the country.
Ms Georgieva also called on the Federal Government of Nigeria to be transparent and account for every single kobo of the fund.
The federal government had assured that it will publicise all disbursements from the funds, adding that there are plans to conduct an independent audit of all emergency expenditure at the end of the pandemic.
The Nigerian government also agreed to allow the IMF to conduct a due diligence exercise on the CBN, these will be done in line with the Fund’s safeguards assessment program.
According to the IMF chief, the money was sent to the CBN’s account in dollars, after which it would be converted to naira.
“We have already disbursed. In emergency assistance, the board approves, we disburse within days to the country and it goes to their central bank in dollars before it gets converted into naira in the case of Nigeria.
“The conditions are quite favourable and repayment period is five years, up to two and half years is grace period and the interest on the loan is one percent,” she said.
Ms Georgieva assured that the IMF will continue to support Nigeria and other member countries.
“We have put in place policy tracking action, and we are seeing progress each country is making.
“The IMF will continue to support countries and shield them from catastrophic implications of the COVID-19 crisis,” she added.
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