GOVERNORS of the 36 states of the federation under the aegis of the Nigerian Governors Forum (NGF) has raised the alarm over the rising COVID-19 cases.
The governors dissociated themselves from comments credited to Kogi State governor, Yahaya Bello that the COVID -19 vaccines are meant to kill.
In a communiqué issued after their teleconference meeting on Wednesday, Ekiti State governor and chairman of NGF, Kayode Fayemi said the governors would do more to reactivate their health systems and open-up treatment centres to minimise the risk of contracting the virus.
Fayemi also briefed his colleagues on a meeting with Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, chair of the Board of Gavi, the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation, on the rollout of the COVAX facility which is a global risk-sharing mechanism co-led by Gavi, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and the World Health Organisation (WHO) to facilitate pooled procurement and equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines across developing countries.
According to him, Nigeria is among 12 countries in Africa that have indicated its readiness, out of the 92 qualified countries for the facility and will by the end of February 2021, receive its first shipment of vaccines.
He also disclosed that the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) has indicated that the vaccines will be administered in four (4) phases, based on vaccine type and availability, initially for frontline health workers, aged (55 and above), persons with underlying medical conditions and other target groups.
He said, “The forum received briefings from three medical experts including leading Virologist and former Vice-Chancellor of Redeemer’s University, Nigeria, Professor Oyewale Tomori; executive director of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Dr. Faisal Shuaib; founder/managing director, Synlab Nigeria (formerly PathCare), Dr. Pamela Ajayi and founding partner of the Anadach Group, Dr. Egbe Dawodu on the country’s preparedness for the procurement and administration of COVID-19 vaccines and the level of collaboration required from all stakeholders, including the federal, state governments and the private sector.