Nigerian govt raises alarm over racketeering of COVID-19 vaccine
The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, on Monday raised the alarm over the reported racketeering of the COVID-19 vaccine in some of the designated vaccination centres across the country.
The minister stated this at the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 briefing in Abuja.
Ehanire, who was represented at the briefing by the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Abdulaziz Mashi Abdullahi, said the Federal Government has met with the manufacturer of the AstraZeneca vaccine and received assurance on its safety and efficacy.
He said: “We have received reports of racketeering in some of the designated vaccination centres. This is not necessary.
“Vaccination has been scheduled in phases such that frontline health workers and those at higher risk of the infection are vaccinated first after registration at the portal.
“Everyone will be vaccinated free and everyone will eventually be vaccinated. There’s no need to pay to be vaccinated.
“The federal government has met with the manufacturer of the vaccine. The outcome of the meeting was a reassurance of the safety and efficacy of the vaccine against COVID-19.
“We have not yet recorded unusual side effects among those who have received the vaccine including myself. NAFDAC is monitoring the process as part of a global tracking of adverse effects of the vaccine.
“Anyone who has received the vaccine and is experiencing any adverse reaction should please report to NAFDAC using the Med Safety App on your phone or report at the centre where you received the vaccination.”
The Executive Director of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency, Faisal Shuaib, said 122, 410 Nigerians had received the vaccine.
He said the reported cases of payment for the vaccine at Falamo area of Lagos State was being investigated by the agency.