From Aidoghie Paulinus, Abuja
The Government of India, has donated a consignment of 100,000 doses of Made in India Covishield Vaccines to Nigeria.
The High Commission of India in Nigeria, in a statement by Vipul Mesariya of its Political and Information Section, said the 100,000 doses of vaccines, manufactured at the Serum Institute of India, Pune, the world’s largest vaccine manufacturing facility, arrived at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, from Mumbai on 26 March 2021 at 1200 hrs.
Mesariya disclosed that the consignment was delivered to the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) by the High Commission of India.
“A consignment of 100,000 doses of Covishield vaccines has been donated by the Government of India to Nigeria. These 100,000 doses of vaccines, manufactured at the Serum Institute of India, Pune, the world’s largest vaccine manufacturing facility, arrived at the Abuja airport from Mumbai via Addis Ababa on 26 March 2021 at 1200 hrs. The consignment was delivered to the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) by the High Commission of India.
“The Covishield vaccine manufactured at the Serum Institute of India is the first COVID-19 vaccine approved by NAFDAC, Nigeria. Its first lot of 3.92 million doses of vaccines under COVAX had reached Nigeria on March 2, 2021. The bilateral donation of 100,000 doses of Covishield vaccines is in fulfilment of the announcement made by the High Commissioner of India at that time,” the Indian High Commission said.
Presenting the vaccines, Indian High Commissioner to Nigeria, Abhay Thaku, said the supply of the vaccines to Nigeria was in keeping with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s commitment, made at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in September 2020, that “India’s vaccine production and delivery capacity will be used to help humanity in fighting Covid19.”
Thakur further said the supplies of Made in India vaccines to Nigeria was in keeping with India’s longstanding, age-old and time-tested ties with Nigeria, based on close friendship and deep mutual trust.
“India has been at the forefront of the global fight against the pandemic and supports a collective approach in this battle. Guided by this philosophy, and as the pharmacy of the world, India, and under its ‘Vaccine Maitri’ initiative (Maitri means Friendship), has supplied millions of doses of vaccines to many countries spread across the globe. As on 02 April 2021 (https://mea.gov.in/vaccinesupply.htm), India had supplied 61.426 million doses of Made-in-India vaccines to 82 countries and will be supplying to more countries soon.
“Despite the supply shortages, and at a time when the 1.3 billion population of India itself has been administered about 55 million vaccines so far, and when about 3 million daily vaccinations taking place in India, its own needs are huge, but India is still supplying vaccines across the world, far and wide. Nearly 36.5 percent of all vaccines supplied to the world, as of mid-March, were Made in India.
“India is not only a leading producer of Astra Zeneca vaccines, and would also produce other vaccines such as Novavax and Sputnik, but has also developed its own indigenous vaccine, Covaxin, by Bharat Biotech, which too is highly effective and has been supplied to many countries. We look forward to NAFDAC approval for Covaxin in due course and its supply to African countries both bilaterally and under various international arrangements such as Covax and AVATT, as well,” the Indian High Commission also said.