Nigeria has received 3.94 million doses of the AstraZeneca/Oxford COVID-19 vaccines from the COVAX facility, Naija News reports.
The NAFDAC-approved Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines arrived in the country around noon on Tuesday, via an Emirates airline.
The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, the National Coordinator of the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC), Chikwe Ihekweazu, and the Director of National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Faisal Shuaib were at Abuja International airport to receive the vaccines.
Recall that Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha, had said on Saturday that Nigeria will receive its first tranche of COVID-19 vaccines from COVAX, a global scheme set up to procure and distribute vaccines for free, as the world races to contain the coronavirus pandemic.
“They (vaccines) should depart India on March 1, 2021, in the night and arrive in Abuja on the 2nd of March, 2021, ” he had said.
He disclosed that the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) would be organising the shipment from Mumbai, India, with the World Health Organisation (WHO), both backers of COVAX.
COVAX, which was set up in April 2020 to help ensure a fairer distribution of coronavirus vaccines between the rich and poor nations, said it would deliver two billion doses to member-states by the end of 2021.
The facility promised access to vaccines for up to 20 percent of participating countries’ populations with an initial supply beginning in the first quarter of 2021 to inoculate three percent of their populations.