FG Unveils National Vaccine Research, Development Plan

The Federal Government has formally unveiled the National Plan for Vaccine Research & Development and local production.

The Minister of State for Health and Social Welfare, Dr. Tunji Alausa, disclosed that the plan was comprehensively developed from a novel bottom-up approach.

The unveiling was made possible by the year-long collaboration between the European Union, the Bulgarian Government, and the National Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Development (NIPRD) on behalf of the Nigerian government.

While unveiling the plan, Dr Alausa noted that the outcome of these efforts was highly desirable to complement the national vaccine policy.

Speaking on the proposed impact of the project on the operationalisation of the vaccine development in the country, the minister explained that the National Plan will serve as a template to guide the end-to-end production of vaccines.

Dr. Alausa applauded the efforts of NIPRD for taking the lead in this initiative, as well as local and international partners for supporting Nigeria’s efforts in this thematic area.

“I will commend you, even as you have now moved to support the next phase of this project, which will lead us to look at domesticating vaccine production,” Dr. Alausa said.

In his remark on behalf of the Bulgarian government, the Bulgarian Ambassador to Nigeria, H.E. Dr Yanko Yordanov, commended the Ministry of Health for the opportunity to be part of what he christened “this critical health initiative.”

He, however, assured of his government’s continuous support and partnership towards the contextual exploration of high-level research activities in Nigeria.

On her part, H.E. Amb. Samuela Isopi commended NIPRD for the timely intervention and its efforts at ensuring that Nigeria becomes a hub of production of medicines in the African sub-region.

Represented by Prof Ben Amor Mathieu, Amb. Isopi reiterated the strong alignment of the Plan with the priorities of the European Union.

Earlier in his remark, the Director-General of NIPRD, Dr. Obi Adigwe, assured that with the relevant support and prioritisation, the Institute could midwife the establishment of up to three vaccine plants in Nigeria within the lifespan of the plan.

He commended the federal government under the leadership of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu for having confidence in the Institute and also giving it all the necessary support to perform optimally in the spirit of the Renewed Hope Agenda.