***as experts assure of vaccine safety
By Ibrahim HassanWuyo
The Northern States Governor’s Forum (NSGF) on Thursday, said its members have agreed to take the first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine when it arrives Nigeria.
The Chairman NSGF, Governor of Plateau State, Honorable Simon Lalong in a webinar organized by an NGO, the Sir Ahmadu Bello Memorial Foundation (SABMF), gave the assurance on behalf of his colleagues.
The safety and efficacy of the Covid-19 vaccine were also discussed.
Represented by the Secretary to the Plateau State Government (SSG), Professor Danladi Atu, Lalong said: “we the Northern Governors have agreed to take the first doses of the vaccines”.
The managing director and chief executive officer of the SBMF, Engr. Abubakar Gambo Umar said the webinar, among others, was basically to sensitize the general public and provide answers to all the issues surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, and its vaccines.
A team of medical experts also gave their opinions about the COVID-19 vaccines, its efficacy and safety.
Dr Faisal Shu’aibu Executive Director National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), said that the projection is that 70 per cent of Nigerians will be vaccinated over the period of two years, adding that the first phase is that 40 per cent of the population will be vaccinated while in the second phase, 39 per cent of the population is expected to be vaccinated.
He said in doing so the risk communication strategies will be implemented across the different phases of the covid 19 vaccine introduction.
A pioneer epidemiologist, Prof Abdulsalam Nasidii, also spoke on the efficacy of the vaccines.
Dr Nasiru Sani Gwarzo an epidemiologist and Permanent Secretary Federal Ministry of Industry Trade and Investments, Prof Zubairu Iliyasu, Director of Centre for Infectious Diseases Bayero University Kano, Prof Sarki Abba Director Center for Urologic Oncology Northwestern University Chicago USA, and Dr Muhammed Adis Executive Secretary of Nasarawa State Primary Health Care Development Agency (NSPHCDA) among others, were also part of the occasion.
A lecturer from the Department of Community Medicine, Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria, Professor Clara Ejembi said the vaccination does not prevent infection.
He said that the need for people to continue to practice preventive measures is important and all actors must be on board.