ABUJA, 6 January 2021 – The Nigerian government says it expects to receive its first batch of COVID-19 vaccines by the end of January 2021, health officials in Abuja confirmed Wednesday.

Nigeria purchase its first 100,000 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine through COVAX, the global vaccine-sharing initiative set up by the World Health Organization (WHO).

Testing for COVID19 in Nigeria

Testing for COVID19 in Nigeria – Photo Source BBC.com

COVAX was set up to assist poor countries in obtaining vaccines at affordable prices amidst fears that rich countries would out-bid and buy up everything.

Faisal Shuaib, the head of Nigeria’s primary healthcare agency, told reporters Wednesday that the Nigerian government seeks to purchase 42 million vaccines to inoculate one-fifth of its population.

Nigeria's Public Health Leader Dr Faisal Shuaib

Dr Faisal Shuaib – Facebook

According to the plan, 40 percent of Nigerians will be inoculated in the course of 2021 and a further 30 percent will be inoculated in the course of 2022.

Inoculation in Nigeria will prioritize frontline health workers, first responders, the elderly, people who are most vulnerable to the virus and national leaders, according to Shuaib.

The best estimates for Nigeria’s population put its inhabitants at close to 200 million.

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