Nigerian health workers began to vaccinate people with the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine on Monday as the country aims to protect its population amid a surge of infections, reported Africa News.
Speaking during the flag-off of the second phase of vaccination, Boss Mustapha, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), said the second phase would be largely prosecuted with the about 4 million doses of Moderna vaccines, which were recently donated by the United States government.
He warned that the third wave of COVID-19, driven mainly by the Delta variant of the virus, has resulted in the upsurge of COVID-19 cases in the last few weeks.
Notably, Nigeria has vaccinated only about 1.23% of its population so far, according to Africa CDC, as it continues to witness a spike in infection rates mainly driven by the highly infectious Delta variant. The Nigerian government received
Chikwe Ihekweazu, Director General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, says the health authorities and workers have put much effort in place to have the population vaccinated.
“We depend on an incredible group of Nigerians that have been working hard for the last eighteen months to deliver vaccines, to test people, to do contact tracing, to treat individuals,” Ihekweazu said. “Our treatment centers are filling up again, health workers are working through the nights every day making sure they save Nigerians.”
The Nigerian government had set a goal of vaccinating at least 40 percent of its population by end of the year, and 70 percent by the end of 2022.
Nigeria received the first batch of nearly 4 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine through the COVAX facility in early March, and 4 million Moderna doses earlier this month donated by the United States.
The government is expecting a further delivery of more than 29 million Johnson & Johnson doses through the African Union.