By Emmanuel Acha
Enugu State Government on Wednesday took delivery of an undisclosed quantity of AstraZeneca Coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccines.
The vaccines arrived at the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu through Allied Air E.Cargo Flight 5N-JRT by 2:44 pm.
Mr Ibrahim Conteh, the Head of UNICEF, Enugu Field Office who received the consignment, said that he was delighted that the vaccines had finally arrived in the South East.
Conteh said that the vaccines would be used to check the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in the area.
He said that the consignment was for the three states of Enugu, Ebonyi and Anambra, adding that more were expected soon.
He said that UNICEF had been involved in the procurement, shipment and distribution of the vaccines.
He said that the reception of the vaccines was an indication that help was on the way.
Conteh said that the vaccines would be stored in cold chains and other facilities used for immunization.
Also, the Health Specialist, UNICEF Enugu Field Office, Mrs Ifeyinwa Anyanyo, said that the vaccines were meant for frontline healthcare workers in the state.
Anyanyo said that each person would be expected to take two doses at four to 12 weeks interval.
Prof. Emmanuel Ikechukwu, the state Commissioner for Health said that he was happy that the vaccines had finally arrived in the state.
Ikechukwu, who took delivery of the consignments meant for the state, said that the vaccines worked best with the non-pharmaceutical measures.
The commissioner said that the first batch of vaccines was meant for frontline healthcare workers and elderly persons with underlying illnesses.
Meanwhile, he noted that the distribution of the vaccines would be done in four phases for it to get to every resident of the state.
However, Ikechukwu said that he had yet to confirm the quantity allotted to the state in the first phase.
He said that the cost of the vaccine was shared between the state government, Federal Government and their partners.
“We commend the efforts of our partners who have been with us since the outbreak of the pandemic,” Ikechukwu said.
Delegations from Anambra and Ebonyi were also on the ground to receive their consignments.