The spread of coronavirus in the world is circulation everyday as Africa records 500,000 Covid-19 cases with over 8 million globally in one month.
The Nigerian Federal Government has commenced negotiations with prospective distributors of Covid-19 vaccines to Nigeria ahead of their availability.
The negotiation kick-started yesterday as the Nigeria vice president, Yemi Osinbajo, stand on behalf of Nigeria at a virtual meeting with representatives of the BNT162 Covid-19 vaccine candidate to negotiate on the progress of vaccine development across the glob, including Africa.
At the meeting, the vice-president told his co-discussants that Nigeria must be given priority when COVID-19 vaccine is ready for distribution.
The government will do every possible means in the development and distribution of a vaccine against Covid-19 pandemic, health and safety of Nigerians citizen is the main priority of the government, according to him.
The vice-president’s spokesman, Mr Laolu Akande, in a statement, said the meeting was attended by the Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, and the Executive Director of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency, Dr. Faisal Shuaib, with representatives of Pfizer and Biotech, the international pharmaceutical firms promoting the BNT162 vaccine candidate.
Osinbajo said interaction between the federal government and promoters of the vaccine candidate “is an important conversation and it is important for us that we are prioritized-as the largest country in Africa-in the distribution of the best COVID-19 vaccine when it’s eventually ready.”
The vice president asked so many questions concerning the Covid-19 vaccine candidate, including how quickly Nigeria can get the vaccine once it’s ready.
He said Pfizer Country Manager and Representative in Africa, Mr. Subair Olayinka, who spoke on behalf of promoters of the vaccine, assured the vice-president that “Nigeria will be a priority,” for the vaccine supply to Africa.
Akande said although COVID-19 vaccine trials are not going on in Nigeria at present, the trials are nonetheless ongoing in some parts of Africa and will be entering the third phase, having concluded the first two phases successfully.