Exactly one year after the first case of Covid-19 was reported in Nigeria, the country is set to receive the first tranche of Covid-19 vaccines, which will expected to arrive on Tuesday. The Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr Boss Mustapha, who made the disclosure on Saturday in Abuja, said the country was making meaningfully progress in its fight against Covid-19.
Mustapha, who is also the chairman, Presidential Task Force on Covid-19, said: “They (vaccines) should depart India on March 1, 2021 in the night and arrive in Abuja on the 2nd of March, 2021.
Reports has it that Nigeria is set to receive its first four million shipment of Covid-19 vaccines from COVAX, a global scheme set up to procure and distribute vaccines for free, as the world races to contain the coronavirus pandemic.
It was learnt that COVAX, which was set up in April 2020, is meant to help ensure a fairer distribution of coronavirus vaccines between the rich and poor nations, as it would ensure the delivery of two billion doses to member-states by the end of 2021.
The body promised access to vaccines for up to 20 per cent of participating countries’ population with an initial supply beginning in the first quarter of 2021 to inoculate three per cent of their populations.
Security Watch Africa reports that Nigeria’s four million vaccines would be its first COVID-19 vaccines from the COVAX facility.
The Nigerian government had earlier announced that the first four million doses of the vaccines would arrive in the country by the end of February.
The SGF disclosed that the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) would be organising the shipment from Mumbai, India, with the World Health Organisation (WHO), both backers of COVAX
He also said that the strategies evolved by the committee to manage the pandemic had been replicated in some other countries, especially the compulsory Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) testing for travellers.
Recall that Ghana had received 600,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccines on Wednesday, making it the first country on the continent to benefit from the COVAX programme.
Similarly Cote d`Ivoire, a country with more than 32,000 COVID-19 cases and 188 deaths, also received over 500,000 doses of the Oxford-Astrazeneca COVID-19 vaccine on Friday.