COVID_19, COVID-19, COVID-19 (Abuja), PEV, Press Conference, Press Statements

Text of a Press Conference on the State of COVID-19 Vaccine Exercise in Bauchi, Borno, Plateau, Kogi, Kaduna and Kano states

Centre for Information Technology and Development (CITAD) Bauchi Office

Thursday 3 rd February, 2022

Good morning ladies and gentlemen of the press, on behalf of the Centre for Information
Technology and Development (CITAD) I would like to thank you honoring our invitation and
coming to cover this press conference. We are indeed grateful to you for your continued support
on our work. The essence of this press conference is to share with you some of the key
hindrances to COVID-19 vaccination exercise we have identified in six states of our project
The Centre for Information Technology and Development (CITAD) with support from
MacArthur Foundation is implementing a “Public Education on COVID-19 Vaccine” in six
states of the north. The states are Bauchi, Borno, Kaduna, Kogi, Kano and Plateau. The project
is aimed at creating awareness around COVID-19 vaccine with a view to getting acceptance and
uptake of the vaccine by people. In all the six states CITAD works with partners from different
backgrounds and professions to enlighten people on the need to take the vaccine.
Hindrances to Vaccine Administration in the Project States
Having monitored COVID-19 vaccine administration in the six project states for the last two
months, we are displeased to note that we have identified both general and specific issues that
are hindering uptake of the vaccine thereby further risking the efforts at addressing the
pandemic. This we must say is unfortunate particularly at a time when new variants of the virus
are emerging. While we noticed that misinformation about COVID-19 vaccine is still prevalent,
we also regret to note here that state governments are in some way aiding non acceptance of the
vaccine by not fully supporting the vaccination exercise where people who want to be vaccinated
are required by the vaccination officials to make payments for their details to be captured and
uploaded online on the national register, this we particularly found happening in Kogi state.
The issue of requesting people to make payments to be vaccinated will not only hamper the
vaccination exercise but will make people to stay away from taking the vaccine, and this
potentially renders more people insecure.
Our observation also discovered a serious lack of coordination in the vaccine distribution by
agencies responsible within the healthcare chain. While in Borno state people going for second
doses for Astrazeneca and Moderna were told the vaccines are not available, in Plateau state
45,288 doses of Pfizer had to be recalled after distribution to local communities for nearing
expiration. Again visits to some vaccination spots in Plateau indicate unavailability of the

vaccines. The lack of proper coordination is causing delay in accessing the vaccine by the
vaccination spots, for example in Maiduguri, the Borno state capital, State Primary Health
Development Agency supplies the vaccination centres with the vaccines without the involvement
of the local government concerned, on exhaustion of the vaccines the centres usually are forced
into confusion as local government usually makes a case that they are supplied the vaccines by
the SPHCDA therefore they should not request from it. This effect of improper coordination put
people on hold unnecessarily.
The problems we have identified are no doubt hindrances to the COVID-19 vaccine uptake. The
identified challenges if not addressed quickly will reinforce the misconception and fake news in
circulation about the vaccine, and that will sabotage the efforts geared towards containing the
virus and addressing the pandemic in general.
1. Vaccine administrators demand data payment from people who want to get vaccinated to
upload their details on the online national register
2. Lack of will from top government officials-that further reinforces negative impression
people have on the vaccine
3. Lack of proper coordination in vaccine administration and distribution
4. Absence of vaccination spots at gathering places such as Mosques, churches, banks
5. Vaccination spots mounted at distant locations
6. Lack of support of opinion leaders
7. Fear of expired vaccines in use
8. Inaccessibility of the vaccines in rural communities
9. Nonpayment of vaccine administrators’ allowances
10. Closure of some vaccination spots due to nonpayment of vaccine administrators
11. Lack cold storage facilities in remote communities
12. Lack of political will
13. Unavailability of vaccines at some vaccination spots
14. Circulation false narratives around the vaccine

Having identified series of avoidable challenges and problems, we would like to strongly
recommend that the following actions be taken to salvage the vaccination exercise:
1. We appeal to Kogi state governor to immediately put a stop to “pay to get vaccinated” by
providing data and other form of supports vaccine administrators in the state
2. Call on the state governors concerned to as a matter of urgency work to address the
problems we have identified
3. They should as examine the vaccination channel in their separate states to have a broader
view of the identified problems and other and deploy the needed mechanisms

4. We urge the public to disregard misconceptions and false narratives around COVID-19
and to get vaccinated
5. We appeal to State Primary Healthcare Development Agencies in the six states to review
their operation manual to ensure proper coordination for effective vaccination exercise
Hamza Ibrahim,
Public Education on COVID-19 Vaccine Project,
Centre for Information Technology and Development (CITAD)

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