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April 12, 2021

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Over 370,000 Nigerians receive first dose of COVID-19 vaccine

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Barely three weeks after Nigeria commenced vaccination of its citizens against the COVID-19 virus, over 370,000 people have received the first dose of the vaccine.

As of Friday, 374,585 eligible Nigerians have been vaccinated, data released by the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) shows.

The data, published on Friday evening, shows that all states, except Kogi, have commenced vaccination against the virus which has claimed over 2,000 lives in the country.

“Kogi State was not supplied with the vaccines because their cold store is still under repairs following vandalisation during the EndSARS protest,” the head of the agency, Faisal Shuaib, said at a briefing on Monday.

According to the data, Lagos, the epicentre of the disease in Nigeria, has vaccinated almost 92,000 people; making it the highest in the country.

This is followed by Ogun with 36,953, Bauchi-31,321, Kaduna-29,426, Jigawa-22, 420 and Kwara- 20,060.

The states with the lowest number of vaccinated people are Kebbi-1, Taraba-1 and Abia-4.

COVID-19 VACCINATION UPDATE

Having received 3.94 million doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines in early March, Nigeria commenced vaccination beginning with healthcare workers who are often at the risk of exposure to infections being the first responders to patients.

The country recently received another 300,000 doses of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines from telecom giant, MTN, as part of the latter’s contribution to Africa.

The Nigerian government had announced its plan to vaccinate 109 million people against the COVID-19 virus over a period of two years.

Health authorities said only eligible population from 18 years and above will be vaccinated.

ALSO READ: Nigeria receives 300,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines from MTN – Official

To achieve this, “the vaccine roll-out will be in four phases, starting with health workers, frontline workers, COVID-19 rapid response team, laboratory network, policemen, petrol station workers and strategic leaders,” Mr Shuaib said.

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“Phase 2 – Older adults aged 50 years and above. Those with co-morbidities aged 18 – 49 years of age

“Phase 3 – Those in states/LGAs with high disease burden and who missed phases 1 and 2.

“Phase 4 – Other eligible population as vaccines become available.”

Although there has been controversy over the safety of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines which prompted some countries to suspend its use, Nigeria has chosen to continue the rollout of the vaccines, saying it is safe for use.

The World Health Organisation and European and American health regulators have also declared the vaccine safe.

No Nigerian has declared any serious side effect from taking the vaccine, officials said.

Over 162,000 Nigerians have tested positive for COVID-19 and over 2,000 deaths recorded.

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