“…with this development by CACOVID Operations Committee, we now have just cause to believe that some members of CACOVID are not happy that BUA took this initiative in the interest of Nigeria.”
Abdulsamad Rabiu’s BUA Group has replied the Coalition Against COVID-19 (CACOVID) following the rejection of its COVID-19 vaccines donation to Nigeria claims.
CACOVID had disowned BUA’s claim of purchasing one million doses of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines for Nigeria.
But in its reaction via a tweet post, BUA alleged that a prominent member of the Coalition is not happy that the company undertook the purchase of the vaccines singlehanded, which informed plans to discredit what it has done to save the lives of Nigerians.
The company, in a rejoinder, titled: “BUA replies CACOVID,” – “Don’t Play Politics with Nigerian Lives”, said it received with utter shock reports allegedly attributed to CACOVID disowning its earlier payment through CACOVID for one million AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines for Nigeria through the AFREXIM Vaccine platform.
The company explained that at the CACOVID steering committee meeting held on Monday, members were informed by the CBN Governor that CACOVID had been given the opportunity through the Afrexim platform to access and pay for one million doses, provided payment was made same day or Tuesday-failure which the opportunity to get those doses by next week might be lost.
“After extensive deliberations, there was no agreement reached despite members being offered the opportunity to donate funds towards procuring the doses at the agreed rate of US$3.45 per dose, totalling US$3,430,000,000, which translates to N1.31 billion.
“The Chairman of BUA also requested through the CBN Governor that the naira equivalent be paid to the relevant account with CBN, and that CBN forward the dollar payment to Afrexim on CACOVID’s behalf. This payment was made immediately after the meeting and BUA transferred the money to the CBN in order to meet the deadline.
“However, with this development by CACOVID Operations Committee, we now have just cause to believe that some members of CACOVID are not happy that BUA took this initiative in the interest of Nigeria and to ensure that the deadline was met to receive the one million doses of the vaccines next week,” it explained.
BUA Group said it did this gesture in good faith as it had done with its interventions throughout the pandemic, adding that “we will, however, like to state clearly that we are aware that a prominent member of CACOVID is not happy that BUA took the initiative to pay for the vaccines-fulfilling our pledge just as we said during the meeting.
“It is time for us to come together to help Nigerians and it does not matter who is helping or paying. We stand ready to keep supporting and despite this petty action, we have decided to let the money remain in the CACOVID Account with the CBN pending when they are ready to utilise the funds for Nigerians to access the vaccines.”