From: Kemi Yesufu, Abuja
The Federal Government has assured that vaccines being used to protect children against killer diseases are safe.
The National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) in a statement issued by its Head of Public Relations, Saadu Salahu, on Friday, called on parents and care-givers, especially those in the South-East to ignore rumours that unsafe vaccines would be administered on children.
The agency appealed for the continued co-operation of parents, who present their wards for vaccination. This was as it urged that those spreading the rumour that children were being targeted with harmful vaccines, to desist from spreading falsehood.
The statement read in part: “The Federal Government wishes to state clearly that there is no such vaccination in any part of the country that is harmful to any child in Nigeria.
“Most importantly, the Federal Government wishes to re-assure all parents, guardians and care-givers of globally confirmed safety, potency and effectiveness of all antigens in the National Immunization Schedule against vaccines preventable diseases in the country and the vaccination is free in all public health institutions.
“It must be re-emphasised that the Federal Government`s annual budgetary allocation, release and cash-backing of huge resources for the provision of safe and potent vaccines is a practical manifestation of its commitment to the safety, growth and survival of Nigerian child.
“While acknowledging and commending all major development partners, states and local governments, traditional and religious leaders, the media, civil societies and stakeholders for their un-wavering partnership, support and commitment on immunisation of Nigerian child, the Federal Government appeals to those peddling such un-patriotic, malicious and misleading information to desist from in-glorious acts and turn a new leaf in support of their country and fellow country men and women”.
Recall that the Nigerian Army free medical outreach in Anambra State on Wednesday was disrupted, with pupils fleeing from their schools, following social media reports that soldiers were injecting school children with unwholesome vaccines.
The Army had since debunked the story, explaining that the outreach was that was part of Operation PYTHON DANCE II in the South-East.