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Breaking: Buhari, Osinbajo to receive COVID-19 vaccines publicly Saturday

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President Muhammadu Buhari and his vice, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo will receive their COVID-19 vaccines publicly on Saturday.

This was disclosed by the Executive Director, National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Dr. Faisal Shuaib on Thursday at a news conference in Abuja.

He said the agency would launch the national COVID-19 vaccination campaign on Friday at the National Hospital, Abuja, with Frontline health workers to receive the AstraZeneca vaccine first.

“On Saturday, the plan is to Vaccinate Mr. President and the Vice President and strategic leaders, to demonstrate vaccine safety to the public,” he said.

He said States have requirements and obligations to fulfill before the COVID vaccines would be released to them.

Shuaib stated that they have to demonstrate that they have taken steps to ensure proper storage, security, among others.

“First and most important, the people we are prioritizing for the Covid-19 vaccination are the frontline health workers, who have sacrificed for the country in the last one year,” he said.

Also speaking, Director General, Nigerian Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, said “today is exactly one year and five days since we identified our first Covid-19 case in Nigeria. With the leadership of Mr. President, Nigeria has actually mounted a very robust response to this pandemic.

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“As much as vaccines provide some very important light, the response has to continue – testing, surveillance, protecting health workers, investing in national health security, driving risk communications, etc.”

Ihekweazu said there would be new variants of the Covid-19 virus, saying that Brazil did not identify a new variant by chance, but because they looked for it, adding that Nigeria must and would be similarly deliberate and proactive.

Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire said vaccines were an addition to the existing response, not a replacement, saying that “we are not buying vaccines from private sources. It’s too risky. We will only procure from the 3 sources I mentioned earlier: COVAX, AVATT, Bilateral Agreements.”

“We have at least 2 vaccine candidates in Nigeria, but they need resources for clinical trials, & we’re trying to support them in that regard. It will take some time. We are also considering producing existing vaccines locally, under license.

“It is in Nigeria’s interest for not only the entire country to be vaccinated, but also for our neighbouring countries to be vaccinated, because of the free movement protocol. As the WHO has said: No one is safe until everyone is safe,” he said.

Director General, NAFDAC, Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, speaking on Nigeria’s vaccine approval process, said “We depend on the work done by other national drug regulatory agencies, but we also have to look at our own local context and peculiarities. Emphasis on Quality, Safety, Efficacy.

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“Falsified Covid vaccines are already in the global market. That’s why NAFDAC is focusing on track-and-trace, to ensure no infiltration of substandard vaccines in supply chain. Traceability is very important; we can trace the vaccines from airport to the patient.”

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Rep accuses resident doctors of receiving multiple salaries

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Rep. Tanko Sununu, Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Healthcare Services says a large number of resident doctors working in federal institutions are receiving multiple salaries.

Sununu said this while briefing newsmen on Thursday in Abuja over the ongoing strike by the Nigeria Association of Resident Doctors (NARD).

“Let me cite an example, in the list of names submitted to the Budget Office, there were many names of doctors appearing in multiple hospitals.

“An account is receiving salary payment more than once in a month, which I was called by the Budget Office that if I can sign an undertaken, then their salaries will be paid,” he said.

He, however, said that he insisted on a no answer, adding that the right thing must be done and the list was sorted out to correct the anomaly.

He said those that had received multiples salaries and the hospitals involved were sorted and forwarded to the committee.

He said that the committee would table it before the house for necessary action, adding that the right thing must be done to end the current NARD strike.

He called on the striking doctors to tamper justice with mercy, stressing that Nigerians believed that their demands were genuine, but there were processes to achieve such demands.

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“On behalf of the speaker, the National Assembly we stand to ensure that everybody is respected accordingly but we have to also follow due process,” he said.

He said that the allegation that the Minister of Labour and Productivity was not willing yo meet the striking doctors was due to communication gap.

“I believe that NARD not meeting the minister is due to communication gap, even while we were seated, the minister called me to update me on development, this may not be the exact demand of NARD but the minister is doing a lot,” he said.

He said that an agreement had been signed which was at the level of implementation, adding that the process had become slow which NARD could longer understand.

He said that in spite of that fact, the National Assembly would ensure that the right things were done but the due process must be respected.

NARD had on April 1 embarked on an indefinite strike over failure of the government to meet its demands.

However, in a swift reaction, Dr Dotun Osikoya, Publicity Secretary and Social Secretary, NARD said that the allegation was not true.

He said that the association was not aware of such, adding that individuals involved should be fished out and punished accordingly.

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Gov Ishaku Calls On Governors of Northern States to Support Their Wives on Drug Addiction Victims Rehabilitation Project.

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Taraba State Governor, Arc Darius Dickson Ishaku has called on Governors of the 19 Northern States to throw their weight behind the campaign of their wives to check drug addiction and rehabilitate victims.


Gov Ishakuh made the call when he received in audience a delegation of Wives of Northern States Governors Forum led by Dr (Mrs) Aminat Bello, wife of the Niger State Governor, in Jalingo.
Members of the Forum arrived Jalingo on Tuesday for a strategy meeting on their campaign against drug abuse.
Governor Ishaku described drug abuse in the country and particularly in the North as endemic and alarming and said the role being played by the Northern Governors Wives Forum was noble and must be encourage

 

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He called on governors in the region to support the Forum to energize them to do more for their states.

Ishaku commended the Forum for their unique approach towards tackling the endemic problem of drug abuse and for the achievements recorded in the Northern States so far. He said posterity would be kind them for these achievements.

In her address, the chairperson of the Forum, Dr Aminat Bello, said the Forum’s approach of sensitising and rehabilitating drug addicts has given hope to thousands of youths in the North.
She said they were in Taraba State to support the efforts of Barr Anna Darius Ishaku, wife of the state governor, to do more in rehabilitating victims of drug abuse.
In her opening address, Barr Anna Ishaku said drug abuse was partly responsible for most of the crimes threatening the country today and called for support against it.
She thanked members of the Forum for coming to Taraba State to give support to her efforts at taking addicted youths out of the drug debacle.
She acknowledged and commended the role of her husband, Gov Ishaku, the Deputy Governor of Taraba State, Engr Haruna Manu and many other officials of the state government for supporting her project.
Barr Anna Ishaku had raised funds and built a drug victims rehabilitation centre in Jalingo which was commissioned by Gov Ishaku and handed over to the state government during the visit of the Northern Governors Wives.

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According to Mr Bala Dan Abu SA to the Governor on Media and Publicity, Gov Ishakuh made the call when he received in audience a delegation of Wives of Northern States Governors Forum led by Dr (Mrs) Aminat Bello, wife of the Niger State Governor, in Jalingo.
Members of the Forum arrived Jalingo on Tuesday for a strategy meeting on their campaign against drug abuse.
Governor Ishaku described drug abuse in the country and particularly in the North as endemic and alarming and said the role being played by the Northern Governors Wives Forum was noble and must be encouraged.
He called on governors in the region to support the Forum to energize them to do more for their states.
Ishaku commended the Forum for their unique approach towards tackling the endemic problem of drug abuse and for the achievements recorded in the Northern States so far. He said posterity would be kind them for these achievements.

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In her address, the chairperson of the Forum, Dr Aminat Bello, said the Forum’s approach of sensitising and rehabilitating drug addicts has given hope to thousands of youths in the North.
She said they were in Taraba State to support the efforts of Barr Anna Darius Ishaku, wife of the state governor, to do more in rehabilitating victims of drug abuse.
In her opening address, Barr Anna Ishaku said drug abuse was partly responsible for most of the crimes threatening the country today and called for support against it.
She thanked members of the Forum for coming to Taraba State to give support to her efforts at taking addicted youths out of the drug debacle.
She acknowledged and commended the role of her husband, Gov Ishaku, the Deputy Governor of Taraba State, Engr Haruna Manu and many other officials of the state government for supporting her project.
Barr Anna Ishaku had raised funds and built a drug victims rehabilitation centre in Jalingo which was commissioned by Gov Ishaku and handed over to the state government during the visit of the Northern Governors Wives.

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Kogi takes delivery of 16,900 doses of COVID-19 vaccines

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The Kogi Government on Monday night took delivery of about 16, 900 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine and the inoculation exercise will be flagged off in the state on Tuesday, April 6.

Dr. Abubakar Yakubu, Executive Director, Kogi State Primary Health Care Development Agency (KSPHCDA), led a team of officials from the agency and the Kogi Ministry of Health to receive the vaccines at the Central Medical Store, Lokoja.

Speaking to newsmen shortly after taken delivery of the vaccines, Yakubu said the most awaited COVID-19 vaccines arrived the state from Abuja at about 7:40p.m., saying Kogi was well prepared for it.

The first line of recipients of the vaccines is the health workers… The vaccine administration will be followed by the first line workers like the police, military, NSCDC, Customs officials, among others,” he said.

Yakubu said that the ministry intended to carry out the campaign as efficient as it could because the state was behind scheduled compared to other states which had almost completed their 10- day mandatory campaign for the administration of the vaccines.

The Executive Director noted that the state was initially expecting about 45,000 doses of the vaccine from the NPHCDA, which accounted for one per cent of the state’s total population.

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“However, to our surprise we are being supplied with 16,900 doses now. I think there will be further reconciliation to send the balance of the doses as soon as possible,” he said.

Also speaking, Alhaji Acheku Yusuf, Kogi Health Promotion Officer, said the ministry had solicited the support of all relevant stakeholders and is running jingles to ensure adequate sensitisation of the people about the vaccine.

On her part, Mrs. Bilikisu Adagiri, the State Cold Chain Officer, said the state was fully prepared for the administration of the vaccines to people above 18 years.

Mr. Olumide Ade-Yeye, the Vaccine Security and Logistic Consultant, UNICEF Kogi, said they were happy as a state to be part of those who would participate in COVID-19 vaccination. (NAN)

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