Oyo state government, on Wednesday, flagged off the vaccination of the 127,740 Covid-19 vaccines received from the federal government, with the first dose administered on Governor Seyi Makinde and the Secretary to the state government, Mrs. Olubamiwo Adeosun.
The vaccination which was carried out at the Executive Council Chamber of the Governor’s Office, Agodi-Secretariat, Ibadan, was witnessed by the representatives of the World Health Organization, UNICEF, and the Nigeria Medical Association.
Speaking after the vaccination, Oyo state governor, Engineer Seyi Makinde, admonished residents of the state to have confidence in the vaccination process and promised that the state would continue to monitor the process for necessary actions.
The governor noted that the sterility tests carried out on the Covid-19 vaccines, validated its safety, and therefore, appealed to the members of the public not to doubt the Covid vaccines. His words:
“I did not want to take the vaccine because naturally I have very low tolerant for physical pains, but when duty calls, we have to do what we have to do.
“When we were discussing this at the Exco, I said when I am taking, the rest of the Executive members will take. But today, it is quite surprising that some members of the Executive wore long sleeves, and others wore short sleeves that are very tight.
“I think we have to show leadership. We have to let the people know that they are protected. When I was reading the newspaper this morning, I saw where they said Oyo State has not given a single shot of the vaccine. So, they recorded zero for Oyo State. But now we have at least one.
“For the states that have taken in their thousands, we always say that ‘no be the man wey first call police dey win case.’ They can be ahead, we will surely overtake them very soon.
“Yes, I ordered for sterility test and rules from some people that are very close to me, because they were shading me on the social media. Of course, eventhough I said I have low tolerance for physical pain, I have high tolerance for emotional pains. So, if they like, they can shade me as much as possible, they won’t do anything to me.
“We did it because when I asked questions about the origin of the vaccine, they said the jabs that came to Nigeria were sent from India. Not that I don’t like India, or I dont believe in their products, but the handling. They said this thing should be stored at a certain temperature, i wanted to validate that the vaccine we will give to the people of Oyo State have been correctly handled.
“We have our two labs here, the Virology Lab and the Bio-respiratory lab and they all came with the same results that the vaccine is good and proper for the consumption of the people of Oyo State and it didn’t take me 24 hours after that to set and agree to come for this vaccination.
“So, on this note, I want to thank our international partners and also the health family in Oyo state. You have risen to the occasion, you have always been there, doing your work. The COVID-19 was better handled in Oyo State compared to most states in Nigeria.
“I also remember the first meeting even before this vaccination. We were discussing around the online registration. In Oyo State, we rightly pointed out that there are data that should be available on the online platform. And we said if the people at the National have designed there own and we feel it wasn’t adequate, we decided to design our own local one and it didn’t take 24 hours before the national copied Oyo State and they upgraded their own.
“So, we will continue to set the pace here in Oyo State and I want to, on this note, let our people know that the process is open, simple. You don’t have to bribe anyone to get vaccinated and we will continue to monitor the process.
“127,000 is nothing when you compare it with the number of people we have to vaccinate in Oyo State. But we will continue getting whatever has been given to us and where we need to augment and go on our own to buy, we will do it when we get to that point.
“So, have confident in the process, have confidence in your government and have confidence in your health family in Oyo State.”
While administering the vaccines on the governor, the Executive Secretary, Oyo State Primary Healthcare Board, Dr. Muideen Olatunji, urged the residents of Oyo State to discard the misconception about the vaccines, noting that the covid vaccines would develop immunity against the disease.
“We want to appreciate the governor for his tenacity in seeking quality health care service for the citizens of the state. We are all aware that since 2019, we faced the pandemic of COVID-19 and it ravaged everywhere in the world.
“Luckily, towards the end of last year, we started seeing the light at the end of the tunnel with the vaccine we can take to protect all of us. Let me state clearly, the vaccine is not a drug for curing the disease but meant to protect us against the disease, and the only instrument the vaccine will use is the body itself.
“This is a new vaccine and a new disease. Health workers need to be trained. Every person will get two doses. The first dose is to prime you and the second dose will act as a booster to confer immunity on us.
“We are encouraging every person to do online registration and we are going to do a manual data capturing as both are going to be synergized together. After the vaccination, we issue a card that will have a barcode. The barcode will be scanned and we are going to load it to a central server for the entire country.
“So, whether you like it or not, the day you want to leave the country and travel, you will be compelled to vaccinate. We implore us to have trust in the process. When you are vaccinated, you can extend signal to every person in the state.”