Nigeria has received its first batch of COVID-19 vaccines, nearly four million doses of the NAFDAC-approved Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines, shipped via the COVAX Facility, a partnership between CEPI, Gavi, UNICEF and WHO.
The vaccines arrived at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, around noon on Tuesday, via an Emirates airline.
“Nigeria has just received the first batch of Oxford/AstraZeneca COVID—19 vaccine,” presidential aide Bashir Ahmad tweeted.
A statement by the United Nations in Nigeria, said the arrival marked a historic step towards the goal to ensure equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines globally.
UN Resident Coordinator in Nigeria, Edward Kallon, said, “The UN Country Team in Nigeria reiterates its commitment to support the vaccination campaign in Nigeria and help contain the spread of the virus.
“The arrival of these vaccines in Abuja today marks a milestone for the COVAX Facility in its
unprecedented effort to deliver at least 2 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccines globally by the end of 2021.”
The National Primary Health Care Development Agency had said it would commence the vaccination of Nigerians in priority groups, starting with frontline healthcare workers.
Top government officials including the PTF Chairman, Boss Mustapha; the Minister for Health, Osagie Ehanire; the Minister for Information, Lai Mohammed; and the Director-General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) Chikwe Ihekweazu were at the airport to take delivery of the vaccines.