The National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) said on Thursday that the Oxford/AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines in Nigeria are safe.
The agency’s clarification came hours after the director general of National Agency for Food Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, insisted that the vaccine was safe.
“We are satisfied that the clinical evidence indicates the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine to be safe and effective,” NPHCDA’s boss Faisal Shuaib said in a statement.
At least four European countries have suspended the use of the vaccine outrightly or a specific batch of it.
NPHCDA said it was aware that concern have been raised regarding batch ABV5300 of the AstraZeneca vaccine, adding that investigations are being conducted to determine if the batch is in any way linked to an observed side effect.
The batch has been suspended in Italy following the death of a navy officer after taking the jab.
The agency said Nigeria did not receive any doses from the batch of the vaccine.
Shuaib said the agency had not observed any adverse reactions since Nigeria began its vaccine campaign, adding that all side effects reported by those who have been administered the vaccine have been mild.
“We are aware of precautionary concerns that have been raised regarding one specific batch of the AstraZeneca vaccine, namely ABV5300.
“Our assessment is in line with countries such as Spain and the UK who have indicated that they will continue to administer the vaccine, because it remains an important tool to protect against COVID-19″, he said.