The Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 (PTF), yesterday, revealed that 60 per cent of alcohol-based sanitisers in Nigeria and especially Abuja, the nation’s capital were substandard.
Secretary to Government of the Federation (SGF) and Chairman of PTF, Boss Mustapha, who spoke in Abuja, bemoaned the development, urging those behind the act to desist forthwith.
“We regret to inform you that following a survey conducted by the Nigeria Institute of Pharmaceutical Research and Development (NIPRD) to check the influx of substandard goods into the market, it was revealed that 63 per cent of alcohol-based sanitisers in Abuja does not have NAFDAC registration numbers,” he said.
He also appealed to Nigerians and requested that they should desist from making sub-standard products, which could further endanger other unsuspecting Nigerians who innocently purchase them.
Mustapha said the situation provided an avenue to turn adversity into prosperity by growing entrepreneurial skills and industrial base for growth and development after the pandemic.
He urged public office holders to stop flouting COVID-19 rules and guidelines, adding, “Unfortunately, we have received reports about violations by some dignitaries, who failed to follow the protocols at the airports. We believe leaders must lead by example.”
Meanwhile, the World Health Organisation (WHO), yesterday, confirmed that 75 countries have indicated interest to protect their populations and those of other nations by joining the COVAX Facility, a mechanism designed to guarantee access to COVID-19 vaccines globally.
The 75 countries, which would finance the vaccines from their public finance budgets, would partner with about 90 lower-income countries that could be supported through voluntary donations to Gavi’s COVAX Advance Market Commitment (AMC).
Combined, the group of 165 countries, among which are representatives of every continent and over half of the world’s G20 economies, represent over 60 per cent of global population.
Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, Dr. Seth Berkley, said, “COVAX is a global solution to the COVID-19 pandemic. For most countries, whether they are able to afford their doses or require assistance, it means receiving guaranteed doses and avoiding being shoved aside, as we saw during the H1N1 pandemic a decade ago.”