In its effort to help mitigate the spread and impact of the Covid-19 crisis, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has confirmed the approval of over ₦10 billion grants and loans to numerous organisations for healthcare and pharmaceutical-related research under the Covid-19 intervention scheme.
A representative of the CBN, Isaac Okorafor, who disclosed the recent development added that numerous applications are being processed and are pending approval under the scheme.
The CBN is aiming to help find a local alternative cure to the raging Covid-19.
Okorafor, who also reacted to the criticism concerning the disbursement of funds to applicants by the CBN and the Presidential Taskforce (PTF) on Covid-19, said ‘Anyone castigating the CBN and the PTF for the grant component is just being mischievous’.
He continued further, ‘Grants are guided by procedures and not a free for all. The grants and loans have to be applied for and processed. There are guidelines that must be followed.
‘There are qualifications for grants, and they have to be met, which in this case must include authentication by relevant government agencies such as the Nigerian Institute of Pharmaceutical Research and Development [NIPRD] and the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) on the scientific foundation of such research’.
Okorafor further said that those criticising the process are persons with an aversion for due process, stressing that the CBN will not be cowed and the right procedures must be followed in disbursing the loans.
He urged interested persons and organisations to register their applications to access the grants and loans and not use the media to ridicule the regulatory body.
Source: Premium Times
Photo source: Thomas Haynie