Dangote proposes bill that will tax mega companies to fund public health in Nigeria

 

Private sector will soon join in helping Nigeria fund the public health sector in other to remove the barrier creating crisis in nation’s health sector.

Spear-heading this move is Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote.

His foundation, the Aliko Dangote Foundation, has proposed a plan that will make private sector players commit one per cent of all their profits to funding health in Nigeria.

Dangote spoke during the virtual Bloomberg New Economic Forum (NEF), at a session hosted by the Dangote Group, titled, “Cross-Sector Mobilisation in Times of Crisis: Public Health Perspective.”

According to him, the new tax, with the National Assembly approval, would be separate from the corporate tax already being paid to the government.

Dangote spoke during the virtual Bloomberg New Economic Forum (NEF), at a session hosted by the Dangote Group, titled, “Cross-Sector Mobilisation in Times of Crisis: Public Health Perspective.”

“Yes, I agree with you. It is more to do with funding. Like what we are doing in Nigeria as a foundation (Aliko Dangote Foundation), we are trying to sponsor a bill to our Congress where we want them to impose a tax,’ Dangote said while responding to a question on funding.

“And I think it is the only way; we cannot just leave government alone. Government alone cannot fund health. So we the foundations, the private sector and then the government, we have to actually work together to make sure that we fund health.”

Rallying round the federal government has even become more necessary in the face of the covid-19 pandemic the world faces now.

Dangote believes the initiative would strengthen the ailing health sector to grapple with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The funding would equally help ensure that the vaccine for treating the pandemic gets to the end-users in the country and across Africa, through viable partnership and collaborations.

Other speakers at the event included, Chief Executive of Flagship Pioneering and Co-founder and Chairman of Moderna, Dr. Noubar Afeyan, and Co-founder and Chief Strategist at Partners in Health Care, Chair of the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School, USA, Dr. Paul Farmer.

 

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