The French President, Emmanuel Macron, has lamented the uneven distribution of vaccines and called on Europe and the US to urgently send up to 5% of their coronavirus vaccine supplies to developing nations.
According to BBC news report, Macron bared his mind to the Financial Times that the failure to share vaccines fairly would further entrench global inequality, as poorer countries are even yet to commence their vaccination programs.
Macron said, “We’re not talking about billions of doses immediately, or billions and billions of euros”
“It’s about much more rapidly allocating 4-5% of the doses we have”.
“It won’t change our vaccination campaigns, but each country should set aside a small number of the doses it has to transfer tens of millions of them, but very fast, so that people on the ground see it happening.”
What you should know
- The US President Joe Biden is set to announce a pledge of $4bn (£8bn) in funding for a global vaccine-sharing scheme, known as Covax.
- Recently, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson – who chaired the G-7 meeting, had announced that he would as well be donating surplus doses to poorer countries.
- According to statistics from Johns Hopkins University, at least 110 million people have been infected with the virus worldwide and more than 2.4 million have died.
- With the support of German Chancellor, Angela Merkel in the European vaccine-sharing initiative, it is expected that the backing of the US would be won as well.
- According to Macron, “In the absence of such an initiative/scheme, China and Russia were filling the gap, paving the way for a war of influence over vaccines”
- 10 countries had administered 75% of all vaccinations worldwide, while 130 countries had not yet received a single dose.
- Richer nations have been accused of hoarding vaccines at the expense of poorer ones.
- It is to be noted that some wealthy nations, such as the UK and Canada, have ordered enough doses to vaccinate their populations more than once.
- Health experts have clearly warned that except the vaccines are shared more equitably, it could take quite longer for the pandemic to be brought under control, globally.
COVID-19 Update in Nigeria
On the 1st of March 2021, 360 new confirmed cases and 8 deaths were recorded in Nigeria
The spread of novel Corona Virus Disease (COVID-19) in Nigeria continues to record significant increases as the latest statistics provided by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control reveal Nigeria now has 156,017 confirmed cases.
On the 1st of March 2021, 360 new confirmed cases and 8 deaths were recorded in Nigeria.
To date, 156,017 cases have been confirmed, 133,904 cases have been discharged and 1,915 deaths have been recorded in 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory.
A total of 1.54 million tests have been carried out as of March 1st, 2021 compared to 1.49 million tests a day earlier.
COVID-19 Case Updates- 1st March 2021,
- Total Number of Cases – 156,017
- Total Number Discharged – 134,489
- Total Deaths – 1,915
- Total Tests Carried out – 1,544,008
According to the NCDC, the 360 new cases are reported from 19 states- Lagos (120), Edo (38), Kaduna (25), FCT (23), Imo (23), Delta (19), Akwa Ibom (17), Plateau (17) Rivers (16) Nasarawa (15), Kwara (13), Oyo (9), Ogun (8), Bauchi (4), Osun (4), Kano (3), Kebbi (3), Niger (2) and Katsina (1).
Meanwhile, the latest numbers bring Lagos state total confirmed cases to 55,848, followed by Abuja (19,234), Plateau (8,894), Kaduna (8,513), Oyo (6,734), Rivers (6,494), Edo (4,590), Ogun (4,396), Kano (3,753), Ondo (2,983), Kwara (2,931), Delta (2,576), Osun (2,433), Nasarawa (2,227), Gombe (2,051), Katsina (2,030), Enugu (2,003), Ebonyi (1,864), Anambra (1,726), and Abia (1,520).
Akwa Ibom has recorded 1,518 cases, Imo (1,497), Borno (1,276), Bauchi (1,228), Benue (1,188), Niger (915), Taraba (804), Ekiti (802), Bayelsa (769), Sokoto (769), Adamawa (762), Jigawa (496), Kebbi (377), Cross River (324), Yobe (268), Zamfara (219), while Kogi state has recorded 5 cases only.
Lock Down and Curfew
In a move to combat the spread of the pandemic disease, President Muhammadu Buhari directed the cessation of all movements in Lagos and the FCT for an initial period of 14 days, which took effect from 11 pm on Monday, 30th March 2020.
The movement restriction, which was extended by another two weeks period, has been partially put on hold with some businesses commencing operations from May 4. On April 27th, 2020, Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari declared an overnight curfew from 8 pm to 6 am across the country, as part of new measures to contain the spread of the COVID-19. This comes along with the phased and gradual easing of lockdown measures in FCT, Lagos, and Ogun States, which took effect from Saturday, 2nd May 2020, at 9 am.
On Monday, 29th June 2020 the federal government extended the second phase of the eased lockdown by 4 weeks and approved interstate movement outside curfew hours with effect from July 1, 2020. Also, on Monday 27th July 2020, the federal government extended the second phase of eased lockdown by an additional one week.
On Thursday, 6th August 2020 the federal government through the secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 announced the extension of the second phase of eased lockdown by another four (4) weeks.
Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State announced the closed down of the Eti-Osa Isolation Centre, with effect from Friday, 31st July 2020. He also mentioned that the Agidingbi Isolation Centre would also be closed and the patients relocated to a large capacity centre.
Due to the increased number of covid-19 cases in Nigeria, the Nigerian government ordered the reopening of Isolation and treatment centres in the country on Thursday, 10th December 2020.
On 26th January 2021, the Federal Government announced the extension of the guidelines of phase 3 of the eased lockdown by one month following the rising cases of the coronavirus disease in the country and the expiration of phase 3 of the eased lockdown.
On 28th February 2021, the federal government confirmed that the first tranche of Covid-19 vaccines will arrive in Nigeria on Tuesday, March 2nd, 2021.
FG launches strategy for introduction of Covid-19 vaccine
The FG has launched a strategy for the phased and equitable introduction of the Covid-19 vaccine across the country.
The Federal Government has launched a strategy for the introduction of the Covid-19 vaccine in a phased and equitable manner across the country.
The strategy code-named, “T.E.A.C.H”, was initiated by the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Health (FMOH).
According to a report by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, during the inauguration said the launch of T.E.A.C.H and Electronic Management of Immunization Data (EMID) will ensure the smooth rollout of the Covid-19 vaccination campaign across the country.
What the Minister of Health is saying
Ehanire stated, “Our goal is to introduce COVID-19 vaccine in a phased and equitable manner, based on the advice of the WHO and the experience we observe other countries to have made, and ultimately vaccinating all eligible Nigerians within the next two years, to ensure herd immunity.
“We in Nigeria finally have the privilege of joining other countries to start the vaccination, which will prioritise, first those people most at risk of infection due to their exposure in the line of duty.
”Vaccination with safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines is a critical part of the country’s strategy to counter the COVID-19 pandemic and the stop transmission of the virus. No private hospital or organisation has experience in handling this type of vaccine than the NPHCDA,” he said.
The minister also said that vaccines that were not approved by the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) would be determined as dangerous and would be seized by the Nigeria Customs Services.
The minister also noted that in less than 24 hours, the first batch of AstraZeneca vaccines would arrive the country from the COVAX Facility and would be deployed.
On his own part, the Director-General of Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, said a lot of work had been done to reduce the casualty of Covid-19 in the country’s population.
Ihekweazu, who was represented by Head of Special Projects and Partnerships at NCDC, Dr Priscilla Ibekwe said that a sister agency, the NPHCDA, was prepared to lead the roll-out of COVID-19 vaccines in the country and NCDC would collaborate with them to ensure a successful campaign.
The Executive Director, NPHCDA, Dr Faisal Shuaib, in his introduction of the T.E.A.C.H Strategy, said it was an Indigenous approach to roll out the Covid-19 vaccine in the country.
Shuaib said that the Country has provided an e-registration link to enable Nigerians to register for the Covid-19 vaccines themselves, to obtain their pre-vaccination numbers and scheduled date
He said that the first phase of the roll-out of the Covid-19 vaccine in the country would target front-line health workers, Covid-19 rapid response teams, laboratory network, petrol station workers and strategic leaders.
According to him, How COVID-19 will be rolled out, Phase 1- healthcare workers, security agents, first responders, petrol station workers, laboratory workers, and strategic political leadership.
What you should know
- It can be recalled that the Federal Government had announced that Nigeria would receive its first batch of 4 million AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine from the COVAX initiative on Tuesday, March 2, 2021.
- The COVAX Facility which is co-led by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, the WHO and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), with UNICEF as a key implementing partner, is a global scheme to procure and equitably distribute vaccines for free, especially among poorer countries, as the world moves to stop the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
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