The Federal Government has barred the private sector from administering the COVID-19 vaccine, reserving the vaccination exclusively for the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) for safety reasons. The Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire said this during the daily press briefing of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 in Abuja on Monday, saying the government is restricting the deployment and implementation of the vaccination exercise to the NPHCDA. Ehanire explained that the decision was to ensure safer and proper management of the COVID-19 vaccination programme, including dealing with any after-effects of the vaccine.
He added that Nigeria is set to receive over 42 million doses of the vaccine from the African Union (AU), aimed at covering 45 percent of the country’s population.
Speaking on the procurement of the COVID-19 vaccine, the minister said the federal government subscribed to two multilateral vaccine access platforms; the COVAX facility which will send free vaccines to cover 20 percent of member country’s population. The AVATT platform by the AU which Nigeria is expected to get 44 million doses of the vaccine.
“Nigeria subscribes to this whole-of-Africa approach that strives to ensure that we are safe and our neighbours are safe.
“We shall be offered over 42 million doses by AVATT. If all the projected vaccines are supplied, we estimate we should have covered over 45 per cent of the population,” Ehanire said.