Monday, October 18, 2021

COVID-19: Over 1.8m Nigerians fully vaccinated, 6 months after flag-off — NPHCDA

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Ibrahim Ramalan
Ibrahim Ramalan is a graduate of Mass Communications from the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria. With nearly a decade-long, active journalism practice, Mr Ramalan has been able to rise from a cub reporter to the exalted position of an editor; first as Arts Editor with the Blueprint Newspapers before resigning in 2019; second and presently as an Associate Editor of the Daily Nigerian online newspaper. He can be reached via [email protected], or www.facebook.com/ibrahim.ramalana, or @McRamalan on Twitter.
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Over 1.8 million eligible people have been fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus, six months since Nigeria began the vaccination of its citizens, an official has said.

Dr. Faisal Shuaib, Executive-Director, National Primary Health Care Development Agency, NPHCDA, stated this on Monday, in Abuja, at the national briefing by the Presidential Steering Committee, PSC, on COVID-19.

According to Mr Shuaib, no fewer than 4,734,769 eligible people in Nigeria had received their first dose of COVID-19 vaccine as at Sept. 26.

He said: “This comprises 3,040,000 with first dose AstraZeneca and 1,694,769 with the first dose of Moderna.

“This represents 4.2 per cent of the 111,776,503 eligible populations, targeted to receive full doses of the vaccines for Nigeria to achieve herd immunity.

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“Out of the total vaccinated, 1,892,092 eligible persons have received their second dose of which 1,825,739 have been fully vaccinated with AstraZeneca, while 66,353 eligible persons were fully vaccinated with Moderna.”

The NPHCDA boss, however, warned that it was a criminal offence for anyone to fraudulently acquire COVID-19 cards without receiving the vaccine, just as buying and selling of COVID-19 vaccines and cards, through racketeering, were also criminal offences.

He said the Federal Government provided the vaccines free of charge to all eligible persons, warning that officers in charge of designated health facility would be held accountable for every vaccination card and Quick Response (QR) code.

He said: “These must match the quantities of vaccines and devices provided. Supervisors and the newly established joint task force (JTF) would be examining the records in health facilities to ensure consistency in inventories.

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“States will be supported to strengthen their monitoring mechanisms, as well as urge all Nigerians to report anyone who tries to buy or sell the vaccination cards to the NPHCDA and other offices.”

He added that a statement on Saturday by the British High Commission, Abuja, that the vaccines administered in Nigeria were recognised and approved by their regulatory body, was a plus for Nigeria.

Mr Shuaib also said that the British High Commission had, in the statement, noted that as from Oct. 4 they would be simplifying their classification process to ‘red list’ and ‘rest of the World’.

“This indicates that the on-going vaccination exercise in Nigeria, is widely recognised.

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“Please, let us not let carriers of misinformation and disinformation prevent us from taking the decision to protect ourselves, our family and our loved ones,” he said.

The NPHCDA boss said that a lot more work needed to be done for Nigeria to reach its target goal of vaccinating not less than 70 per cent of the eligible population of 111,776,503.

He said that such vaccination should not only be done “in terms of provision of vaccines, but more importantly in terms of mobilising our friends, families and communities to get vaccinated”.

NAN

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