4m Doses of COVID-19 Vaccine to Arrive Nigeria March 2

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By Olawale Ajimotokan

The federal government has announced that the first batch of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines will arrive the country from India on March 2 barring any changes.
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation and the Chairman Presidential Task Force on COVID- 19, Mr Boss Mustapha announced this Saturday.

He said the vaccine supply was through the delivery plan released by UNICEF in charge of the logistics for the supply of the vaccine meant for Nigeria through the COVAX facility that is bringing four million doses in first batch of the shipment to the country.

“I can assure you that the vaccines are coming and coming very quickly barring any change in the delivery plan released to us by UNICEF. The logistics and other things are in the hands of UNICEF. The vaccines should depart India on the March 1 2021 at 10. 30 pm and arrive Abuja on March 2, 2021 at about 11.10 am. We are making preparations for them and this one is about four million doses of vaccines and we are supposed to receive about 16-million dosages in the first quarter,” Mustapha said.

He said by the time they supply all the range of the vaccines, about 84 million doses are expected from COVAX to be supplied to cover 20 per cent of the Nigerian population.

In addition, he said that the federal government also has another source from the Harvard facility which is the African Vaccine Action team, a combination of Oxford AstraZeneca and Johnson and Johnson vaccines.

The SGF said 41 million doses is expected from the second source. He assured that AstraZeneca has a good range in terms of storage which does not come with any complications because it can be stored is +2 to +8 Degree Celsius and in cold chain facilities that are available in all local governments and wards in the country.

He, however, cautioned the public that protection from COVID-19 requires a combination of vaccines and by strictly abiding to Non Pharmaceutical Interventions (NPIs) that are in place, as well as need for personal hygiene and not congregating in a large gathering of people.

He said the country will ultimately arrive at a herd immunity by the time it gets 40 percent of the population vaccinated by 2021 and another 30 percent by 2022, which is a commulative of 70 per cent of the population .