Barring any last-minute changes, President Muhammadu Buhari, and Vice-President, Yemi Osinbajo, would on Saturday receive shots of AstraZeneca/Oxford COVID-19 vaccines against the deadly coronavirus disease.
As stated, the decision to begin the vaccination regime with the president and vice president had been reached in line with the government’s commitment to boost Nigerians confidence in the vaccine.
Executive Director, National Primary Health Care Development Agency, Dr Faisal Shuaib, disclosed this at a State House briefing in Abuja on Thursday.
Aside from Buhari and Osinbajo, Shuaib also said that the Secretary to Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, would be vaccinated on Saturday for Nigerians to overcome vaccine hesitancy and that the vaccination programme would launched on Friday at the National Hospital, Abuja.
“The plan is to vaccinate the frontline health workers that work in the treatment centre of the National Hospital, those will be the first people just like we’ve communicated that frontline health workers will be the first people to take the vaccines.
“After that, the plan is to vaccinate Mr President, Mr Vice-President and strategic leaders on Saturday. Again, we are hopeful that when Nigerians see leaders like Mr President and Mr Vice-President take the vaccines; it will increase their confidence around the safety of the vaccines.
“As you are well aware that even before the vaccines arrived in Nigeria, there is a lot of hesitancy. It is a global phenomenon. Vaccine hesitancy is similar no matter where you are, you have to provide the right information and to those people who have questions, we cannot dismiss their cynicism.
“It is our responsibility as public health workers not to only offer the vaccines but do the extra work in terms of providing the resources that are needed and to convince people that these vaccines are safe,” he said.