More states in Nigeria are beginning to receive their own share of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine.
Nigeria had earlier received 3.94 million doses of the vaccine from COVAX facility, an initiative co-led by the Vaccine Alliance, GAVI and the World Health Organisation. The distribution which started in Ogun state receiving its first batch of the total N100,000 earmarked has begun to spread across other south-west states.
Lagos, Ekiti and Ondo state, have received a total of 635,530 doses of the vaccine. Lagos collected 507,000; Ekiti received 52,960 while 75,570 was delivered to Ondo state.
Distribution in Lagos
The Lagos State Commissioner for Information, Mr Gbenga Omotoso, said the state had received the first consignment of 507,000 AstraZeneca COVID-19 COVAX vaccine provided by the Federal Government. Omotoso, in a statement, said the vaccine had been transferred to the state cold chain facilities for safe storage and inventory management.
He said, “The first consignment of 507,000 Astra Zeneca COVID-19 COVAX vaccine provided by the Federal Government arrived in Lagos at 5 am today. The vaccine doses have been transferred from the airport to our state cold chain facilities for safe storage and inventory management.
“The Federal Government Phase 1 rollout plan, which is targeting frontline and essential personnel, will be communicated in the next few days. Additional consignments are expected.
“Details of the vaccine rollout will be clearly articulated to the public by the Incident Commander, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, who has inaugurated a multi-stakeholder COVID-19 Vaccine Access and Distribution Committee chaired by the Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi
Distribution in Ekiti
In Ekiti, the Governor, his deputy and other members of the government body including frontline health workers have received the vaccine.
The Governor said Ekiti State was one of the very few states to strengthen the testing capacity by procuring a Molecular Laboratory in addition to mobilising eminent citizens under the Rapid Response Mobilization Committee (RRMC) which raised about $3million used to fund some critical infrastructure and social needs to support the fight against the pandemic.
Urging the citizens to disregard any unfounded theories about the efficacy and effects of the vaccines, he said, “We should not introduce unnecessary sentiments to the health and well-being of our people for whatever reasons.”
Distribution in Ondo
The vaccine was delivered through Akure Airport and received by officials of the Ondo State Primary Health Care Development Agency on behalf of the state government. Prof. Fatusi, the chairman of the inter-Ministerial committee on COVID-19, maintained that “the state is excited and the state is ready to get residents vaccinated.
“We are ready because the system of vaccination is based on our existing system for childhood immunization. In other words, we’re looking at the facilities, the cold-chain system that is already on the ground which has performed creditably for years.