In line with her goal of achieving herd immunity against the Covid-19 virus, Nigeria has taken delivery of 2million doses of Johnson and Johnson(J&J) vaccines from the European Union (EU).
Executive Director of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Dr. Faisal Shuaib disclosed this in Abuja on Monday, February 7, 2022.
TheFact Nigeria gathered that the Johnson and Johnson vaccines were reserved for desert, riverine, conflict-compromised areas and other hard to reach parts of the country.
Shuaib, in his keynote address at the handover of the vaccines, appreciated the European Union for their kind gesture and disclosed that their donation brought the total number of J&J vaccine available to the country to 51m doses. However, only 12,916,450 doses were currently available in the country.
Consequently, the NPHCDA Boss stated that no brand of vaccine was superior to the other and therefore encouraged the unvaccinated citizens to take the Vaccines:
“We have no doubt about the commitment of the European Union to the eradication of COVID-19 from Nigeria and the rest of the world. The onus is upon us to make rational and effective use of the vaccines.
“I would like to assure our partners, Nigeria is committed to a safe, equitable and effective COVID-19 vaccination program. Let me also mention that the availability of different vaccine brands does not in any way mean that some categories of people are selected for high quality vaccines while others are targeted for low quality vaccines.
“All COVID-19 vaccines approved by the World Health Organization are safe and can deliver adequate protection against the disease. While choice of vaccine is left for eligible persons to make, it is important to note that no particular vaccine brand is preferable to the other.
“I am glad to inform you that Nigeria has vaccinated 15,792,392 (14.1%) of her eligible population with the 1st dose”, he said.
The leader of the European Union Delegation and EU Ambassador to Nigeria, Samuela Isopi, disclosed that the 2million doses were donated by Finland, Greece and Slovenia.
Furthermore, she stated that Team Europe was glad to join forces and pool together their resources to support partner countries in the common fight against the Covid-19 virus.
“To date, Team Europe has mobilised at least EUR 38.5 billion, of which €8 billion for the African continent. The EU is now stepping up its effort to support Africa, where vaccination is lower than in other parts of the world”, Isopi said.
On his part, the World Health Organisation (WHO) Country Representative to Nigeria, Dr. Walter Mulombo, said that the additional vaccines donated by the EU was safe and reiterated the Organisation’s support for Nigeria to meet her vaccination target.
“WHO is constantly analysing data as we receive them and working closely with relevant government agencies to use the data to help inform, initiate, and implement response actions, as well new policies, and strategies at National, State and LGA levels”, he said.