Nigeria is set to take delivery of 3.92 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine on Tuesday, March 2, the Federal government has announced.
The delivery will mark the first arrival of COVID-19 vaccine in the country and make Nigeria the next West African country to benefit from the COVAX Facility after Ghana, and Cote d’Ivoire.
Nigeria plans to vaccinate at least 70% of eligible Nigerians aged 18 years and above in four phases within two years.
A statement from Executive Director and Chief Executive of the NPHCDA, Dr. Faisal Shuaib, reads in part:
“The arrival of this vaccine is the result of the commitment of the Federal Government of Nigeria, under the leadership of His Excellency, President Muhammandu Buhari, the support of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 and the guidance of the Honourable Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire.”
“We are fully prepared to receive and deliver the vaccine to eligible Nigerians as we have commenced the training of health workers and ensured that cold chain facilities are ready at all levels. We have a robust cold chain system that can store all types of COVID-19 vaccine in accordance with the required temperature. We are therefore confident that we will have a very effective roll-out of the vaccine, starting with our critical healthcare workers, who are in the frontline in providing the care we all need.”
The delivery of the AstraZeneca vaccine is part of an overall 16 million doses planned to be delivered to Nigeria in batches over the next months by the COVAX Facility, as part of an unprecedented global effort to ensure equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines.