Nigerians assured that all vaccines certified by NAFDAC were highly effective against the virus, including the ravaging delta variant.
Some Nigerians, who took the first jab of the Oxford-astraZeneca coronavirus vaccines but are yet to take the necessary second jab due to it not being available, may now sigh in relief as receives delivery of 699,760 doses of the vaccine.
The vaccines, were delivered through the COVAX facility, an initiative aimed at ensuring equal distribution of vaccines globally, part of the three million doses of vaccines donated to 11 African nations by the government of the United Kingdom.
The vaccines were on Tuesday disclosed to thje Public by the Nigerian government at the National Strategic Cold Store near the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja, Federal Capital Territory.
The UK government had pledged to share 80 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines with COVAX, as part of a broader pledge to share 100 million doses with the rest of the world.
Speaking during the unveiling of the vaccines, the head of Nigeria’s immunisation agency, Faisal Shuaib, said the doses would be targeted at those due for the 2nd dose of the AstraZeneca vaccines earlier administered.
“I am glad to inform you that last night, we received 699,760 doses of AstraZeneca vaccine donated by the UK Government. We are most grateful to the government and people of the UK for this gesture.
“This vaccine will be deployed immediately to the states and would be administered as second doses to those who had earlier received only the first dose of the vaccine during the first phase of the vaccination roll-out,” he said.
He urged all persons, 18 years and above, due for the second dose of AstraZeneca vaccines to visit the vaccination centres and encourage friends and families to do the same to ensure full protection from the virus.
Mr Shuaib assured Nigerians that all vaccines certified by NAFDAC were highly effective against the virus, including the ravaging Delta variant.
Nigeria had commenced the first phase of COVID-19 vaccination on March 5, 2021, having received approximately four million doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines from COVAX.
The first phase, however, ended abruptly following the exhaustion of the vaccines.
Only about 3.9 million eligible persons across 36 states and FCT, received their shots from the doses.
“2,534,205 people have been vaccinated for the first dose and 1,404,205 have received their second dose of the vaccine,” Mr Shuaib said.
UK official speaks
She said the UK was one of the first countries to back COVAX with €548 million.
The Executive Director of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) Faisal Shuaib and the Acting British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Gill Atkinson at the unveiling of the 699,760 doses of Oxford AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines donated to Nigeria by the UK government
Ms Atkinson said donating through COVAX helps increase vaccine coverage, ensure that no dose goes to waste and helps to bring an end to the phase of the pandemic.
Nigeria’s Vaccination campaign
Nigeria on Monday flagged-off the second phase of COVID-19 vaccination having received 4 million doses of Moderna vaccines from the government of the United States of America.
The country also received another 177,600 doses of Johnson and Johnson (J&J) COVID-19 vaccines from the African Union (AU).
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, at the flag-off, said the arrival of these vaccines prompted the second phase of the vaccination.