By Dan-Maryam Zayamu
The National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) has disclosed that 8,841,467 Nigerians who took the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine were yet to take the second dose.
The Executive Director of the NPHCDA, Dr. Faisal Shuaib, who disclosed this at a media briefing Tuesday, revealed that so far, 416,980 Nigerians have received their booster dose.
He, however, insisted that only those who are fully vaccinated can achieve maximum protection against COVID-19.
Giving further breakdown, Dr. Shuaib said that as at January 25, 2022 , 14,093,873 eligible persons have received the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine in Nigeria.
He, however, revealed that only a paltry 5,252,406 eligible Nigerians have been fully vaccinated.
He disclosed that Nasarawa, Jigawa, FCT, Ogun and Kwara have remained the top 5 performing states on COVID-19 vaccine uptake.
“It is noteworthy to mention that Jigawa and Lagos have each vaccinated about 1.5million eligible Nigerians with the first dose, while FCT, Nasarawa, Lagos and Delta are leading on second dose administration with more than 10% of eligible populations in each of the states already vaccinated.
“It is in our spirit of transparency and accountability that we consider it important to keep Nigerians informed about the progress of COVID-19 vaccination in the states.
“We also believe that this information will serve as an encouragement for the states in the vaccine uptake, going forward.”
While calling on state governors to make deliberate efforts to improve vaccination uptake in their states, Dr. Shuaib suggested some steps the governors can take to achieve good results.
The steps, according to him, include: “The governor should convene a meeting of local government area chairmen, traditional, political, religious leaders and the health team.
“He should charge them with the responsibility of ensuring that the populace within their constituencies are duly vaccinated.
“The governor should charge the LGA Chairmen and health teams to develop a daily, weekly and monthly Covid-19 and Childhood vaccination targets based on the total eligible populations
“The governor can meet with the LGA Chairmen and health teams on a weekly basis, to review the results of the campaigns and confirm if these targets are being met. This can also be an agenda on the weekly State Executive Council meetings.
“The governor can apply accountability mechanisms to the vaccination process by publically rewarding LGA teams that perform the highest and sanctions teams that do not meet the minimum requirements despite the supports.
“This can be done in a fortnightly ceremony where the Governor shakes the best performers and issue certificates or plaques of excellence.”
On his part, the UNICEF Country Representative in Nigeria, Peter Hawkins, applauded the five states of Nasarawa, Jigawa, FCT, Ogun and Kwara for doing exceptionally well in the current COVID-19 vaccination exercise.
While commending the efforts of the federal government for making vaccines available to Nigerians, Dr. Hawkins disclosed that the federal government has so far invested 298 million dollars which is nearly equivalent to 122, 180,000,000 naira to procure 29 million doses of J& J vaccines.
He revealed that Nigeria has so far received 51, 40,140 doses of vaccines.
Giving further breakdown, he said that out 51, 40,140 doses, Nigerian government paid for only 29 million doses.
The other doses, he said, were donated to Nigeria by the international community through COVAX, GAVI, WHO , UNICEF and others.
Hawkins, however, said that, “10 million doses is being stored, ready to come into Nigeria which makes it 51million doses that is being received in Nigeria.
According to him: “298 million dollars have been used by the Nigerian government for the procurement of 29 million J&J vaccines. That is a commitment to make the vaccines available at it is required.
“The actual figure is so far, Nigeria has received 51, 40,140, but committed is forty one million, eight hundred and forty seven doses of vaccines.
“There is 10 million doses that is being stored, ready to come into Nigeria which makes it 51million doses that is being received in Nigeria”
By Dan-Maryam Zayamu