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  NERC gets US$33.5m to fight Ebola

February 3, 2015  By Victoria Saffa

WINDFALL … NERC boss, Rtd. Major Alfred Palo Conteh
WINDFALL … NERC boss, Rtd. Major Alfred Palo Conteh

The Ministry of Finance and Economic Development has disbursed a total of US$33.5m to the National Ebola Response Centre (NERC) to carry out activities relating to the fight against the deadly Ebola virus in the country.

The money is part of a US$99m grant allocated to the country last year by the World Bank to finance Ebola containment efforts and help families and communities affected by the virus.

According to the Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Dr. Kaifala Marah, US$7m was allocated for administration and management of 14 national and district Ebola centres, and to support tracking and monitoring exercises.

He said US$10m has been put aside for hazard payment while about US$1m will go to the Inter-Religious Council, traditional leaders and several groups nationwide. Another US$5m will be used for the payment of death benefits and social safety nets, while the rest of the money will be used to purchase more equipment and service delivery, Dr. Marah said.

The minister further told journalists that the funds are part of a US$1 billion pledged by the World Bank to assist the three nations worst hit by the outbreak, adding that both NERC and his ministries have already signed an agreement to ensure transparent usage of the grant money.

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