Nigerian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Geoffery Onyeama, on Tuesday, said the government has opened talks with China to procure COVID-19 vaccines, reported Anadolu Agency.
The announcement followed the Nigerian minister’s meeting with his Chinese counterpart, Wang Yi, who is on a working visit to African countries.
“We have received a lot of support from China in the area of personal protective equipment that they were very quick to provide us with,” the Nigerian minister said.
Onyeama said China greatly helped Nigeria during the pandemic, noting that the donation of PPE helped the country fight COVID-19. He said that the government is already in talks with the Chinese government with regard to access to vaccines for the people of the country.
“China is also one of those countries that have been able to discover vaccines for COVID-19, so we are also engaging with China to also help with regards to access to vaccines for our people,” the Nigerian minister said.
He added that the relationship between the two countries has continued for the past 50 years, adding that both countries have many areas of cooperation to celebrate.
Meanwhile, on Tuesday, Faisal Shuaib, head of the Nigerian primary healthcare agency, said the country hopes to get 42 million COVID-19 vaccines to cover one-fifth of its population through the global COVAX scheme.
Shuaib said Nigeria’s plan to vaccinate 40% of the population this year, with another 30% in 2022. He added that 100,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine are expected to arrive by the end of January.
He said that the Nigerian government aims to first vaccinate frontline health workers, doctors, nurses, first responders, national leaders, people vulnerable to coronavirus, and the elderly.
Nigeria has reported 92,705 confirmed COVID-19 cases so far. More than 1,318 people have lost their lives due to the virus.