Documents on the World Bank Group’s website have shown that Northern Nigeria enjoys majority of the contracts sponsored by the bank in the country. The findings come after President of the World Bank, Jim Yong Kim, revealed that President Muhammadu Buhari had instructed them to concentrate on the North.
The Punch reports that the World Bank website, showed that out of the 14 World Bank-sponsored projects in the country, seven are exclusively for the North, while six others are meant for the whole nation (South-West, South-South, South-East, North-West, North-East, North Central and North West); and the remaining one is for Lagos State. Titled ‘Projects and Operations’, these projects were listed under June 2015 – June 2017 projects.
The projects exclusive to the northern region worth $1bn are: Multi-Sectoral Crisis Recovery Project for North-eastern Nigeria ($200m; Borno, Yobe and Adamawa); State Education Program Investment Project ($100m; North-East states); Community and Social Development Project ($75m; Borno, Yobe, Adamawa, Taraba, Bauchi, and Gombe); Youth Employment and Social Support Project ($100m; Borno, Yobe, Adamawa, Taraba, Bauchi, and Gombe States); Additional Financing Nigeria State Health Investment Project ($125m; Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Taraba and Yobe) and the Third National Fadama Development Project ($50m; selected area in the North-East). The seventh northern project worth $350m is for the Kaduna State Economic Transformation Program-for-Results Project $350m. The KSETPRP, which was approved in June 2017, is expected to close on March 31, 2021.
Projects worth $2.9bn were earmarked for the nation which northern states are also expected to benefit from. They are: Better Education Service Delivery for All ($611m); Mineral Sector Support for Economic Diversification Project ($150m); NEITI Reporting Compliance ($0.32m); the Polio Eradication Support Project ($125m); National Social Safety Nets Project ($1.8b); and $200m-Agro-Processing, Agricultural Productivity Enhancement and Livelihood Improvement Support Project specifically designed for Kano, Kaduna, Lagos, Cross River, Kogi, Enugu and three other states.
There was also the Third Lagos State Development Policy Operation ($200m), a stand-alone project which was approved on June 26, 2015 and ended on December 31, 2016.
The Presidency had claimed that Kim’s statement was misinterpreted. It claimed that Buhari had meant the reconstruction of the North East, which has been ravaged by terrorism.