The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki and the Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, have reiterated the need for more persons to get vaccinated against the deadly COVID-19 virus.
They spoke during the Presidential Steering Committee on COVID-19 Vaccination, South-South Zone Townhall Meeting, at the Government House, in Benin City.
The Minister of Health said over 90 percent of deaths recorded from COVID-19 are of unvaccinated persons, noting that the deaths occurred because those affected had no protection against the deadly virus.
Osagie noted, “I know the fatigue in wearing face masks, washing of hands, sanitizing of hands and other measures. That fatigue is certain not only in Nigeria but in other countries. I want to appeal to elders all over the country to encourage vaccination among their people.
“The vaccines are certified by the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) and also tested by other countries’ regulatory agencies, and these checks have assured that the vaccines are safe and effective for use.”
On his part, Edo State Governor represented by his Chief of Staff, Hon. Osaigbovo Iyoha, said, “The main objective of the COVID-19 vaccination exercise is to accelerate the spread of herd immunity, which will ultimately slow down and interrupt transmission of COVID-19 in the state and the entire country.
“Edo State has received several thousand doses of the Oxford AstraZeneca and Moderna vaccines since March 2021 till date, and over 130,000 persons have been vaccinated.”
He added, “98 percent of deaths recorded in Edo are people who have not taken the vaccines. This underscores our decision to take the bold unwavering stance to get as many people as possible vaccinated so that we do not stretch our healthcare system and trigger a collapse.”
Obaseki said, “Our target in Edo is to get a minimum of 60 percent of our population fully vaccinated within the next one year so that we can effectively combat the pandemic. I implore everyone to get vaccinated. That way, we can save lives and be able to return to living our normal lives. We want to appreciate everyone in the state who has taken the COVID-19 vaccine; the numbers are quite encouraging.
“We urge those who are yet to get the vaccines to visit the nearest vaccination posts set up in worship centres, hotels, banks, event centres, markets, shopping malls and other strategic locations,” he added.
The World Health Organisation Country representative for Development Partners and Donors, Dr. Walter Molumbo, said that the townhall meeting provided an opportunity to discuss the importance of vaccination.