THE United Nations Human Rights Organisation, in Geneva, on Friday, advised governments to consider the introduction of an emergency universal basic income to support individuals in the private sector as world economy slips into a global recession brought on by the Coronavirus outbreak.
Juan Pablo Bohoslavsky, UN Independent Expert on the effects of foreign debt and human rights said despite efforts made by many countries to counter the economic impacts of the outbreak through large-scale economic stimulus measures, it is of utmost importance to ensure that the plans go beyond bailing out large companies and banks.
“Those working in the informal sector, who are self-employed, and who cannot work from home need economic and fiscal incentives to stay at home.
“They will otherwise need to go to work and thereby put at risk their personal and family health and those of the broader community.
“It is essential that public services are provided free of charge for those who cannot afford them. Debt-servicing should be suspended for individuals who would otherwise be unable to cope with the public health crisis. Mass evictions must absolutely be prevented,” said the Independent Expert.
Bohoslavsky urged international financial institutions to urgently mobilise financial resources to help countries combatting the pandemic by placing human rights first on its list of priorities.
Since the outbreak of the novel coronavirus that originated in Wuhan China late January, the global market has been battered by the downward market performance in tradings and investments around the world.
Within the week, the United States released emergency funds in the tune of $1billion dollars, for businesses as the virus sweeps through the country.
Subsequently, the Canadian government also announced state payment of individuals’ rents and availability of $82 billion economic stimulus fund a bulwark for its citizens.
The Central Bank of Nigeria also has announced that it would be infusing $2.7 billion dollars to bolster support for manufacturing and other key sectors of the economy.