South Africa

Nigeria to receive first Covid-19 vaccine doses in February

Cape Town - Nigeria expects to take delivery of its first coronavirus vaccine doses in February.

According to various media reports, health workers, top government officials and vulnerable people will be given priority.

Bloomberg reported on Thursday that the vaccines, which could be as many as 100 000 doses of Pfizer Inc.’s shot, would be procured through the Covax initiative backed by Gavi the Vaccine Alliance, the World Health Organisation and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations.

The first batch would be enough for a maximum of 50 000 people, equivalent to about 0.00025 percent of Nigeria’s population.

As of Thursday, Nigerian health authorities reported 116 655 Covid-19 cases to date in the West African country, with 93,646 people subsequently recovering while 1,485 have succumbed to the virus.

Stakeholders in Niger state have raised the alarm over the possibility of more Nigerians dying of hunger if the government at both local, state and federal levels hoards palliatives, the Daily Post reported.

The religious leaders, health workers, traditional rulers, market leaders and the media, among other groups, said the government must do its best to ensure that the second phase of the disease did not get out of hand.

Relief agencies have also warned that measures put in place to slow the spread of the coronavirus are pushing millions of people in Nigeria into severe hunger.

The director of the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) John Nkengasong told a press conference on Thursday that the continent’s case fatality rate was now at 2.5 percent, above the global average of 2.2 percent, CGTN reported.

Africa has so far recorded around 3.3 million cases of Covid-19 and nearly 82 000 deaths, Africa CDC data shows.

African News Agency (ANA)

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