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Coronavirus

WHO is concerned that vaccine hoarding could prolong pandemic

The wealthier countries are focused on securing these vaccines for their citizens.

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WHO is concerned that vaccine hoarding could prolong pandemic, COVID 19: Facebook provides free Ads to help WHO combat Misinformation, COVID 19: Facebook supports WHO, provides free Ads to combat Misinformation, Coronavirus: WHO says Nigeria is among countries with highest cases, WHO warns countries against rushing to lift coronavirus restrictions, Covid-19: WHO lists conditions for relaxing restrictions

As the global push to develop coronavirus vaccines intensifies, the World Health Organization (WHO) has expressed serious concerns about the likelihood of a prolonged pandemic due to countries’ decision to hoard vaccines.

The Director-General of the WHO, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, expressed this concern during a virtual briefing on Tuesday, August 18, 2020. He said:

We need to prevent vaccine nationalism. Sharing finite supplies strategically and globally is actually in each country’s national interest.”

READ: Gold price loses $80 following Russia’s COVID-19 vaccine approval

The WHO requested that countries should join a global alliance which is aimed at ensuring that less wealthy countries have access to COVID-19 vaccines. He also warned about the risks of vaccine nationalism.

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With the several coronavirus vaccine development programmes by pharmaceutical companies and research institutions at different levels of trials, the WHO came up with a vaccine programme, the COVAX Global Vaccines Facility.

The COVAX Global Vaccines Facility is a programme designed to pool funds from wealthier countries and nonprofit organizations to develop a COVID-19 vaccine and distribute it equitably around the world. The aim is to deliver 2 billion doses of effective, approved COVID-19 vaccines by the end of 2021.

READ: IMF assessing additional tools to provide aid to pandemic-hit countries 

The programme, which is led by the WHO along with the Gavi Vaccine Alliance and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), has its details still being reviewed and ironed out ahead of an August 31 deadline for countries to join.

The COVAX is part of a broader programme called the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator, which works to ensure that vaccines, treatments, diagnostic tests, and other healthcare resources are broadly available to combat the pandemic.

The wealthier countries are focused on securing these vaccines for their citizens, signing agreements for the first doses even as the data has not yet proven the effectiveness of these vaccines.

The United States and some other countries like the United Kingdom, Japan, and even the European Union have spent tens of billions of dollars on deals with some vaccine makers like Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, AstraZeneca and others. The United States have single handedly committed almost $11 billion.

READ: UK secures deals to supply 90 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine from Pfizer, others

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Countries like Russia and China are also working on their own vaccine development programmes and have even begun vaccinating some of their citizens.

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The ACT Accelerator is funded by various governments and nonprofit organizations and aims at raising about $31 billion. According to the WHO, about 92 poorer countries have shown interest in the COVAX facility.

These vaccines give broad parts of the population some level of immunity and are considered crucial to putting an end to the pandemic. They also take a longer time to develop, partly because they must be proven to be extremely safe.

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While some scientists say that a vaccine could be ready for emergency use by the end of this year, others say it could take far longer time.

Chike Olisah is a graduate of accountancy with over 15 years working experience in the financial service sector. He has worked in research and marketing departments of three top commercial banks. Chike is a senior member of the Nairametrics Editorial Team. You may contact him via his email- [email protected]

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Coronavirus

Benue State Governor, Ortom tests positive for COVID-19

Benue State Governor has commenced treatment after testing positive for COVID-19.

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Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State has tested positive for COVID-19.

This was disclosed by his Chief Press Secretary, Terver Akase, in a statement issued on Wednesday.

He stated, “This follows the test results of most of the Governor’s close aides who also returned positive in the last few weeks.

“Though the Governor has not shown any symptoms of the disease, he has already commenced treatment as prescribed by medical personnel.”

According to him, the governor has advised those who have come in contact with him in the last couple of days to go for a test.

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“The Governor says it is equally important that those who came in contact with other persons who have tested positive for the virus should go for a test to ascertain their COVID-19 status.

“Governor Ortom urged Benue people to continue to observe the protocols for the prevention of the virus such as wearing of face masks, use of sanitisers, regular hand washing and physical distancing,” he added.

What you should know

Some of the governor’s aides which included his personal physician, aide de camp, orderly, permanent secretaries among others had recently tested positive for the virus.

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Coronavirus

Nigerian Governors who have tested positive for Coronavirus 

Ten Nigerian governors have contracted the novel coronavirus, but some have recovered.

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On January 27, 2021, fear gripped the Benue State Government House, as Governor Samuel Ortom tested positive for COVID-19.

This was disclosed by his Chief Press Secretary, Terver Akase, in a statement issued on Wednesday.

He stated, “This follows the test results of most of the Governor’s close aides who also returned positive in the last few weeks.

“Though the Governor has not shown any symptoms of the disease, he has already commenced treatment as prescribed by medical personnel.”

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Governor Ortom

 

As the fear over the second wave of coronavirus pandemic thickens, Plateau State Governor, Simon Lalong tested positive for COVID-19 on December 17,2020.

This was disclosed by the Director of Press and Publicity to the governor, Dr Makut Macham, in a statement on Thursday.

According to Macham, the governor took the test along with members of his family while his result came out positive but that of others were negative.

Plateau SEC agrees to 50% pay cut, as labour agrees to postpone implementation of new minimum wage

On December 12, 2020, Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu tested positive for Coronavirus after he went into isolation a day before.

#EndSARS: Anyone found culpable in Lekki Toll Plaza shooting would be held accountable - Sanwo-Olu

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On Wednesday, July 22, 2020, Ekiti state governor, Kayode Fayemi disclosed that he tested positive to Coronavirus but recovered on August 01, 2020, after he spent 11 days in isolation centre.

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Also, on August 09, 2020, in a tweet on his verified handle @kfayemi, he announced that his second COVID-19 test had returned negative, and that means he is totally free from the virus.

Ekiti state government imposes curfew, full lockdown, Ekiti state slashes Right of Way charges for Telecom infrastructure from 4500 to 145, Ekiti State Secures UN and SHS Holdings partnerships to invest $2 billion for building 50,000 homes

Ekiti state governor

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The governor of Abia state tested positive for coronavirus, it was announced on June 08, 2020.

Ikpeazu directed the deputy governor to act on his behalf.

Ikpeazu’s result came out negative following his test on May 30. However, he submitted another sample on June 4, which turned out to be positive.

On Saturday, July 4, Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi announced that he had tested positive for COVID-19. This makes him the 6th Governor to have tested positive for the virus that has infected over 11 million and killed no less than 532,000 people globally. 

Governor David Umahi of Ebonyi State

Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El- Rufai was the first governor confirmed to have been infected and recovered in April. 

READ ALSO: Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde is worth over N48bn

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Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna State

Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed, was also infected in March and was reported to have recovered on the 9th of April. 

Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State

Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde, announced that he tested positive on 30th, March, 2020 and his recovery was reported on the 5th of April. 

Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State

Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, tested positive last week on June 30th and Delta’s Ifeanyi Okowa announced that he and his wife had tested positive on July 1. 

READ MORE: NNPC to recommence search for oil in the Lake Chad Basin

Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State

Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State

READ ALSO: Abba Kyari’s last letter to President Buhari

 

The governors who have tested positive for COVID-19 are:    

1. Nasir el-Rufai

2. Bala Mohammed

3. Seyi Makinde

4. Rotimi Akeredolu

5. Ifeanyi Okowa

6. David Umahi

7. Kayode Fayemi

8. Babajide Sanwo-Olu

9. Simon Lalong

10. Samuel Ortom

READ: Minister of Foreign Affairs, Onyeama tests positive for COVID-19

Earlier this weekend, Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom announced that his wife, Mrs. Eunice Ortom, their son, and some of the wife’s aides had tested positive for COVID-19.

With Nigeria and the rest of the world still battling to contain the dreaded virus, the total number of confirmed cases has risen to 28,167 from 148,188 tests carried out as at Saturday, July 4, 2020. In addition, while 11,462 have recovered, 634 persons have died.

 

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Coronavirus

South African President appeals to wealthy countries not to hoard COVID-19 vaccines

South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa has called on the world’s wealthiest countries to stop “hoarding” vaccines.

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South Africa High commission in Nigeria shuts its offices, South Africa announces 21-day lockdown following spike in Coronavirus cases

The South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa has urged the world’s wealthiest countries to stop “hoarding” vaccines and called for an end to “vaccine nationalism.”

He made this call at the World Economic Forum’s virtual Davos Agenda event, where he clearly cautioned that some countries had ordered more supplies of vaccines than they needed, and that this was counterproductive to the global recovery effort.

According to him,

  • “Ending the pandemic worldwide will require greater collaboration on the rollout of vaccines, ensuring that no country is left behind in this effort”
  • “The rich countries of the world went out and acquired large doses of vaccines from the developers and manufacturers of these vaccines, and some countries have even gone beyond and acquired up to four times what their populations need”
  • “That was aimed at hoarding these vaccines and now this is being done to the exclusion of other countries in the world that most need this”

What they are saying

According to Africa CDC Director, John Nkengasong, the African continent is quite facing a “very aggressive second wave” of the pandemic, with mortality increasing on average 18% across the 55 African member states last week.

“We as a continent must recognize that vaccines will not be here when we want them, but as such we need to really focus on the public health measures that we know work”

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He however praised the progress of the African Vaccine Acquisition Task (AVAT) Team, which he said was created when AU nations realized “how the world’s richest countries are behaving.”

What you should know

  • South Africa is the country, worst hit by Covid-19 on the continent.
  • As at date, the country had recorded more than 1.4 million cases with 41,117 deaths.
  • The African Vaccine Acquisition Task (AVAT) Team has secured a provisional 270 million doses for AU member states directly, in addition to the 600 million expected from the World Health Organization’s COVAX initiative.

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