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Why I will receive COVID-19 vaccine – Adeboye

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Why I will receive COVID-19 vaccine – Adeboye
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Why I will receive COVID-19 vaccine – Adeboye

The General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Pastor Enoch Adeboye, has explained that he will receive COVID-19 vaccine for the sake of the gospel.

He stated this on Friday night during the monthly Holy Ghost Service programme of the church at the Redemption Camp along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway.

The 79-year-old preacher said God’s mercies have kept Nigerians all along, noting that only those whose time to die had come died.

Addressing thousands of his members, Adeboye said, “I have never said to you, ‘Don’t be vaccinated.’ You’ve never heard that from me. Rather than live in fear or doubt, get vaccinated. If you believe that getting vaccinated will put your mind at rest, then go ahead.

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“Daddy, are you saying that you too could be vaccinated? If there are nations in the world that say that I cannot come to preach the gospel there because of vaccination, I will do anything for Jesus Christ.

“If vaccination or no vaccination is going to hinder me from doing the work God has called me to do, even if they ask me to be vaccinated 100 times, I will be vaccinated.

“So, don’t ever say that you heard from me that I said that you should not be vaccinated.”

Why I will receive COVID-19 vaccine – Adeboye

Adeboye, however, described as laughable, the move by some governors who made COVID-19 vaccination compulsory before people could attend church gatherings.

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He noted that such leaders were missing the point, saying that the number of vaccine jabs available in the country was not enough to go round.

With the detection of the deadly Delta variant globally, some countries have made COVID-19 vaccination a compulsory immigration item.

Nigeria has so far recorded over 200,000 cases of COVID-19 and more than 2,700 associated deaths since the index case of the virus was reported in the country in March 2020, according to statistics by Nigeria Centre for Disease Control.

With the number of cases and fatalities on the rise, the NCDC continues to urge Nigerians to maintain social distancing and hygiene practices as well as use masks in public to prevent transmission of the lethal virus which has been identified to move through droplets.

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The Federal Government through the National Primary Health Care Development Agency has since been encouraging Nigerians to take COVID-19 vaccines in order for the country to achieve herd immunity.

About five million Nigerians have since received their first shots of COVID-19 vaccination while about two million have completed their second doses, according to NPHCDA statistics as of end of September.

The government also encourages religious and political leaders to take the vaccine to dissipate vaccine hesitancy among the populace.

However, the Presiding Bishop of the Living Faith Church Worldwide aka Winners’ Chapel, David Oyedepo, said that he won’t take the COVID-19 vaccine jab, adding that he is not a guinea pig.

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UNICEF Decry Uneven Distribution Covid Vaccines Across the World

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UNICEF Decry Uneven Distribution Covid Vaccines Across the World
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UNICEF Decry Uneven Distribution Covid Vaccines Across the World

By Bashir Hassan Abubakar

Ahead of the G20 Leaders’ Summit this weekend the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) has decry the glaring inequity in Covid Vaccines distribution across the world, saying that G20 countries have received 15 times more COVID-19 vaccine doses per capita than countries in sub-Saharan Africa.

This assertion, which was contained in a press statement signed and issued by Nchekwube Nwosu-Igbo, UNICEF’s Communication Assistant, said that an analysis, conducted by science analytics company Airfinity, exposes the severity of vaccine inequity between high-income and low-income countries, especially in Africa.

It went further to say that doses delivered to G20 countries per capita are: 15 times higher than doses delivered per capita to sub-Saharan African countries;15 times higher than doses delivered per capita to low-income countries and 3 times higher than doses delivered per capita in all other countries combined.

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“Vaccine inequity is not just holding the poorest countries back – it is holding the world back. As leaders meet to set priorities for the next phase of the COVID-19 response, it is vital they remember that, in the COVID vaccine race, we either win together, or we lose together”, said UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore.

According to the statement, wealthy countries with more supplies than they need have generously pledged to donate these doses to low and middle-income countries but, that these promised doses are moving too slowly, with only 194 million doses have been provided out of the 1.3 billion additional doses pledged by these countries with excess.

UNICEF further said that African countries in particular have largely been left without access to COVID-19 vaccines. Less than 5 per cent of the African population are fully vaccinated, leaving many countries at high-risk of further outbreaks.

The world body said that, as leaders prepare to meet for the G20 Summit in Rome this weekend, 48 UNICEF Africa ambassadors and supporters from across the continent have united in an open letter, calling for leaders to honour their promises to urgently deliver doses, writing that “the stakes could not be higher.”

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The letter’s signatories, including Angelique Kidjo, Arlo Parks, Davido, Tendai Mtawarira, Femi Kuti, Tony Elumelu, Ramla Ali, Kate Henshaw, Winnie Byanyima and others, are calling on leaders to donate the pledged vaccines by December, along with the necessary resources to turn the vaccines into vaccinations.

“Every day Africa remains unprotected, pressure builds on fragile health systems where there can be one midwife for hundreds of mothers and babies,” the letter reads.

“As the pandemic causes a spike in child malnutrition, resources are diverted from life-saving health services and childhood immunization. Children already orphaned risk losing grandparents. Disaster looms for sub-Saharan African families, four out of five of whom rely on the informal sector for their daily bread. Poverty threatens children’s return to school, protection from violence and child marriage.”

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UNICEF said, according to WHO, some 80,000 to 180,000 healthcare workers globally are estimated to have died from COVID-19 between January 2020 and May 2021. Less than 1 in 10 healthcare workers in Africa have been fully vaccinated and more than 128,000 have been infected with the virus. The agency has also found only one in seven COVID-19 infections are detected in Africa due to limited testing, meaning the true number is likely much higher.

“Saving lives in Africa starts by saving the lives of the life-savers,” said Fore.

“Too many communities on the African continent were already grappling with stressed healthcare systems. They cannot go into another year of this global crisis enduring so many preventable deaths and prolonged sickness.”

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FG Budgets ₦2,178 For Each Citizen’s Healthcare In 2022

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FG Budgets ₦2,178 For Each Citizen’s Healthcare In 2022
Minister Of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire
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FG Budgets ₦2,178 For Each Citizen’s Healthcare In 2022

Despite the importance of the health sector, LEADERSHIP investigation revealed that the Federal Ministry of Health received the sum of Over N1.385.36trillion in the last three years (2019 to 2021).

A breakdown of the budget in the past three years (2019-2021) shows that N6,534 was budgeted for each citizen, indicating N2,178 per citizen in a year, based on the 2021 proposed population of the country.

Only four to five percent of the country’s total budget is allocated to health annually, against the Abuja Declaration of 15 percent budget allocation to health in 2001.

In 2001, heads of state of African Union (AU) countries met in Abuja and committed to prioritise the health sector by allocating at least 15 percent of their annual budgets to the sector.

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FG Budgets ₦2,178 For Each Citizen’s Healthcare In 2022

Now 20 years after this commitment, which Nigeria was part of, countries like Rwanda, Ethiopia, Malawi, Swaziland, Togo and the Central African Republic have since met this target.

Nigeria has not even been able to allocate half of the expected 15 per cent in these 20 years.

LEADERSHIP gathered that recurrent expenditure got about N1.93trillion while capital expenditure got N240bn in the years in question.

In 2019, for instance, of the total budget of N8.9 trillion, as contained in the Budget Office of the Federation document, the sum of N423.92 billion, representing 4.75 per cent of the budget, was allocated to health.

In 2021, of the total budget of N13.82 trillion, the sum of N546.98billion, or 4.18 per cent of the budget, was allocated to health: N380.21billion went to recurrent expenditure and N35.03billion to BHCPF, bringing the total recurrent expenditure to N415.24billion, while N131.74 billion was meant for capital expenditure.

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This indicates that a large percentage of the health budget goes to salaries, pensions and overheads while only a fraction is allocated to investment in healthcare facilities, equipment and other infrastructure.

Experts in the health sector have blamed low budgetary allocation for the deplorable state of the country’s health sector. They, however, linked corruption and poor utilisation of the little money provided as major challenges.

“It is true that the budgetary allocation is very low. It’s a shame, but the truth is that even the utilisation, the proper application and judicious utilisation of the little provided, is a huge problem. That is what people call corruption, but I don’t call it corruption, I call it stealing.”

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Also, a reproductive health expert, Dr. Ejike Orji, identified corruption and lack of accountability as another challenge confronting the sector, saying even the little that is allocated is diverted.

According to him, a research by Bill and Melinda Gates on public health financing showed that out of every N100 that was meant for the health sector, only 40 per cent was spent while 60 per cent was stolen.

“ people are dying unnecessary in the country. ““People are dying on a daily basis. In the past week I have counted people who have died who on a good day wouldn’t have died, and the reason is that the healthcare response to their needs was very poor.

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FG Sets To Establish Numerous Covid19 Vaccination Sites In Nigeria

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FG Sets To Establish Numerous Covid19 Vaccination Sites In Nigeria
President Buhari leading by example
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FG Sets To Establish Numerous Covid19 Vaccination Sites In Nigeria

*Nigeria least committed in W-Africa to tackling inequality amid Covid-19

The Federal Government has said plans were on the way to set up mass vaccination centres across the country.
This came as Nigeria was ranked as the worst performing country in West Africa in the global effort to defeat inequality during the COVID-19 pandemic, while the Federal Government has been charged to invest massively in public education, health and social protection, to tackle poverty, joblessness and other inequalities.

The Federal Government explained that the development was in line with the commitment to ramp up COVID-19 vaccine uptake.

Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer of National Primary Health Care Development Agency, NPHCDA, Dr Faisal Shuaib, disclosed this during a press conference he held to update Nigerians on the country’s current COVID-19 vaccination status, yesterday.

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He said: “The objective of this strategy is to vaccinate a high volume of individuals through large sites such as federal institutions (universities, polytechnics), shopping malls, religious centers, sporting events, conference centers, and markets etc.

“This will require strong collaboration between NPHCDA, state governments, religious bodies, school authorities and governing bodies of malls and large sporting events.”

“As we expand the vaccination sites, we encourage all eligible Nigerians to avail themselves for vaccination.

FG Sets To Establish Numerous Covid19 Vaccination Sites In Nigeria

“I am also glad to inform you that we have commenced the process of decentralizing COVID-19 vaccination in Nigeria, to include private health care providers.

“This is to expand access and increase utilization of the vaccines,” he added.

Shuaib disclosed that as of the time of the briefing, “A total of 5,246,523 eligible populations have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine in Nigeria.

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“This represents 4.7 percent of our target population.

“The number of eligible persons fully vaccinated in Nigeria is 2,546,094 which represents 2.3 percent of our target population,” he said.

Nigeria least committed in W/Africa to tackling inequality amid Covid-19

Meanwhile, the 2021 Commitment to Reducing Inequality Index, CRII, which ranks Nigeria last among the 16 countries of the Economic Community of West African Countries, ECOWAS, and second to the last in Africa (45th out of 46 countries), based its verdict on the nation’s very low spending on education, health and extremely limited and poor quality public services, amid high taxation.

The CRI Index which was developed and delivered through a partnership between Finance International and Oxfam International, with inputs from independent experts, ranked the Nigerian government 157th out of 158 countries on commitment to reducing inequality in areas of education, health and social protection; taxation; and, workers’ rights.

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From the Index, Nigeria has the 5th highest income inequality among the 15 ECOWAS countries including Mauritania.

But the country was “woefully unprepared as COVID-19 hit, spending only five percent of its budget on health and leaving more than 40 percent of Nigerians with no access to universal health services.”

In a response to the development, the country Director of Oxfam Nigeria Dr Victor Ahonsi, charged the Federal Government to invest massively in public education, health and social protection, to tackle poverty, joblessness and other inequalities amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

Speaking at the 2021 Tax Summit held in Abuja, the Country Director, Oxfam Nigeria, Dr Vincent Ahonsi, said Nigeria’s poor commitment towards reduction of poverty and inequality was worrisome.

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