EHANIRE: NIGERIA IN TALKS WITH RUSSIA OVER COVID19 VACCINE

From Moses Emorinken, Abuja

Nigeria is currently in talks with the Russian Government and other countries producing reliable vaccines for a possible supply when they are developed.

Minister of Health Dr. Osagie Ehanire, who stated this on Thursday, added that although India has been promise 10 million vaccines from the Russian Government, it is optimistic Nigeria will not be left out of similar arrangements.

Speaking during the briefing of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, on Thursday in Abuja, Ehanire said: “With regards to the conversation we had with His Excellency, the Russian Ambassador, there was no memo. We requested to know about the development of their vaccines, how far they have gone, and what they have done so far.

“His Excellency came with a memoir, which is a document explaining how far they have gone and giving us contact information of their scientists, particularly the research centre where this development was going on. At the meeting we had with the Ambassador, we also had our own side present – who asked questions and were given a website to contact the scientists at the research centre. That conversation is going on as I speak and I haven’t got a report yet.

“We are in conversation and our own is to look at all countries who are producing reliable vaccines, and ways of collaborating with them in obtaining vaccines or manufacturing other licence if possible or whatever kind of collaboration that is possible.

“The Federal Government has a vaccine company that is just beginning to work – Bio Vaccine Nigeria Limited. The Federal Government has a share. The chairman was at that conference also that we had with the Russian Ambassador. They are also following up I’m sure to find opportunities of collaboration. I don’t rule it out that one day they may be invited to visit to look at how far they have gone and what we can learn from them.”

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