From Ighomuaye Lucky, Benin
The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, has lamented that the country has lost well over 2,000 Nigerians to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) since its outbreak in February 2020.
The minister stated this at the joint Town Hall meeting of the Presidential Steering Committee on COVID-19 and National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) on COVID-19 vaccination in Nigeria, South-South zone, which was held in Benin City.
The minister disclosed that 90 per cent of those who have died from the pandemic across the globe were those who did not take the first or second dose of the vaccine, adding that it was God who has revealed to the scientists how to manufacture the COVID-19 vaccines.
He said the two sure ways available at the moment to safeguard oneself against the virus are the adherence to the non-pharmaceutical rules which are the social distancing, washing of the hands, using of hand sanitiser and the vaccine.
Dr Ehanire assured that the federal government will continue to work with the relevant agencies and stakeholders to ensure that citizens get vaccinated, disclosing that the federal government is making plans to set up vaccines producing plants in the country.
NPHCDA Executive Director Faisal Shuaib said as of September 24, about 4,680,000 Nigerians had been vaccinated against COVID-19 in Nigeria with 1,865,127 of these fully vaccinated with two doses.
He noted that this was below the set target of reaching herd immunity, pointing out that the government is not only confronted with the COVID-19 pandemic but with misinformation about the vaccine.
Dr Faisal added that NPHCDA was particularly concerned about the reported attempts to sell COVID-19 vaccination cards to clients who would rather put themselves and others at risk than seeking protection against the disease.
He said the government is not in any way going to condone this as they have put together a Joint Task Force on COVID-19 vaccine Monitoring and Accountability to detect and bring offenders to book.
He cautioned that vaccine card racketeering, or any other related offence, is a crime that can land any convicted person in jail.
The Edo State governor, Godwin Obaseki, represented by his Chief of Staff, Osaigbovo Iyoha, said over 150,000 persons have been vaccinated in the state.
He said the state government has taken the lead in combating the scourge and it encouraged others to key into it for a safe and better society.
Also speaking, the Oba of Benin, Ewuare II, represented by his palace chief, HO Bazuaye, said he is in full support of every effort put in place by the government to curtail the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Oba commended the state government for its roles in the fight against the pandemic in the state.
The post COVID-19 has killed over 2,000 Nigerians – Ehanire appeared first on The Sun Nigeria.