As Nigeria receives the first batch of COVID19 vaccines by the end of January, Faisal Shuaib, Executive Director of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency, says it would be good to see President Buhari, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, Boss Mustapha, Federation Secretary of Government, and other top government officials taking the COVID19 vaccine in the public’s full glare.
Shuaib said this when he spoke at the COVID-19 Presidential Task Force’s daily briefing in Abuja on Thursday, 7 January. According to him, this intervention by the nation’s leaders would give Nigerians a message that the vaccine is safe.
On Tuesday, I stated that we would like to see a situation where critical leaders, Mr. President, the Vice President, the SGF, come and take the vaccine in full view of the public to show that this vaccine is safe.
So, for those, we have to make arrangements. But also in developing countries, what we have found is that you still have to recognize critical leaders who don’t want them to be wiped out by the virus, apart from prioritizing health staff.
In warfare, for example, if you want to kill your rivals, you are searching for particular leaders: captains, generals, once you decapitate them, the soldiers are helpless.
So, you don’t want to leave your leaders vulnerable to COVID-19 as much as possible, either. This doesn’t say that you want to prioritize politicians, because that’s not correct.
At the last briefing, I stressed that our health workers would be prioritized because they are the ones in close touch with cases in isolation units.