A five-year-old schoolgirl has donated her savings to support the battle against the coronavirus pandemic in Ogun State.
Kemi Ogunleye, a Basic-1 pupil, made the donation of N950 following government’s appeal for support to get medical supplies for coronavirus patients in the state, according to her father Olalekan.
“My daughter said she wants to join the rest of the world to fight the COVID-19 pandemic,” Mr Ogunleye told PREMIUM TIMES on Saturday. “So that they can return to school.”
Mr Ogunleye, a chemical engineer and data analyst based in Abeokuta, said his daughter operates a piggybank account from where she withdrew N1,000 to donate. The amount was reduced to N950 after transactions charges were deducted.
Schools have been shut across Nigeria for more than two weeks amidst the rush to prevent the virus from spreading. Other social and economic activities have also been disrupted.
As one of the world’s poorest countries least prepared to combat the pandemic, authorities have been forced to appeal for donations from corporate bodies and individuals. Billions have been donated to the federal government and state authorities in Lagos, Ogun and others, where the outbreak has been spreading.
Ogun State currently has three confirmed cases of COVID-19, but the state is amongst the three jurisdictions, alongside Lagos and Abuja, that were put under lockdown by President Muhammadu Buhari effective March 30.
Governor Dapo Abiodun has been racing to curb the virus spread in Ogun, opening an isolation facility in the state this week. The facility and other containment efforts in the state would be funded from donations going into a dedicated bank account that was recently set up.
Mr Abiodun commended Miss Ogunleye’s donation on Twitter Saturday, encouraging her “to continue to be generous.”
“Oluwashikemi followed the footsteps of leading philanthropists that have proven in our dear state so far that humanity remains intact,” Mr Abiodun said. “I am proud to be the Governor of a philanthropist.”
Miss Ogunleye’s donation, which came from her piggybank savings, could have a bigger impact beyond its symbolism and spur a windfall of similar contributions towards COVID-19 relief efforts, her father said.