Gates Foundation To Boost Healthcare, Agric in Northeast


SAN FRANCISCO, March 17, (THEWILL) - Primary healthcare and agriculture in Borno State and the rest of the Northeastern states will soon receive a boost, courtesy of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

A statement issued by the Special Adviser (Communications) to Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno State, Alhaji Isa Gusau, said the Foundation made the commitment on Sunday following a special appeal by the State Government.

The statement said the Foundation agreed to accord accelerated support to Borno State and the rest of the northeast on primary healthcare and agriculture.

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is the world's number one private body supporting global eradication of polio and other child killer diseases.

It is also backing the Nitrogen for Africa project designed to ensure high yields in agriculture through soil technology and fertilizer improvement.

Shettima, who is presently in United States for a symposium on counter-insurgency where he is expected to make presentations on security conditions in Borno State and its prospects, alongside his Bauchi State counterpart, Malam Isa Yuguda, were at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation headquarters in Washington D.

C on Sunday.
The three-hour meeting was chaired by the Foundation's President on Global Development, Dr.

Chris Elias.
Present at the meeting were other top officials of the Foundation and representatives of the World Health Organisation (WHO) and UNICEF, among other stakeholders.

Shettima , who appealed to the Foundation to step up support for Borno due to the current challenges and his government's efforts on primary healthcare also appealed for Borno's inclusion in the Foundation's Nitrogen fixation project is aimed at supporting high yield in farming activities through a technology that improves soil fertility.

Responding to the request, , the President, Global Development of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Elias made a commitment that the Foundation will step up support for Borno State.

Elias also hailed the leadership qualities of Shettima which resulted in the progresses recorded by his Government on primary healthcare.

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation had in 2013 selected Governor Shettima as the most committed Governor in the Northeast on the area of primary healthcare while WHO also gave his government an award for enhancing healthcare delivery.