$200 million loan: Counterpart fund to complement global malaria action plan ― Ehanire

• Nigeria closer to manufacture vaccines ― NAFDAC

The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire has said the $200 million loan request is Nigeria’s counterpart fund to complement a global malaria action plan to combat malaria in Nigeria.

Ehanire made the clarification at the Bi-Weekly Press Briefing on the updates on COVID-19, Cholera, Health Promotion and other related issues in Abuja.

Ehanire said: The amount in question is actually referring to a component of the world bank assisted Multilateral Borrowing plan and it involves the African Development Bank and the Islamic bank.

“The project development was done by the Ministry of Health and Ministry of budget. the purpose is for Nigeria counterpart fund to complement a global malaria action plan”.

“The main donors to this rollback malaria are three. The first is the US, The US presidential malaria initiative donated 295m dollars and they are going to use that to cover 11 states, the global funds to fight aids, TB and malaria provide about 400m dollars for very high burden malaria in 13 States in the country to continue to roll back malaria and this leaves 13 States which have no financial support for this program.

“In order to have full coverage, for our partners to release their funds, they need these 13 States to be covered on the condition that Nigeria will provide 200m dollars for the 13 States for five years and this covers 208 LGAs, 3,536 PHCs and about 60m of the population”.

Ehanire further disclosed that experts estimate that the money averts 78,000, death, 14.5 illnesses from malaria and provide 17. 6m malaria services in these states.

“It is important to note that only 26% of this is actually planned for net. The money is domiciled in the ministry of finance and the ministry of health is only helping”.

Meanwhile, the Director-General of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control(NAFDAC), Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye also disclosed that Nigeria is closer to beginning manufacturing its vaccines to fight disease outbreaks.

According to Adeyeye: “Nigeria closer now to manufacturing her own vaccine and it will no longer be because it has no regulatory agency.

“Attaining the global benchmark would not have been possible without some in-country measures by the agency”.

“The global bench has some eight functions. They are laboratory testing, market authorisation, market control, regulatory inspection and vigilance among others.

“We were asked to expand our laboratory . We have expanded the drug lab in Yaba and the vaccine lab is being built”.

“The list the WHO gave us that we have 868 recommendations. This number came up through self-audit and that was in January 2018”.

Adeyeye further said through Self audit, the Agency find out that the template that the WHO gave us that we have 868 conditions to meet and by October 15, 2021.

“We have met those recommendations. However, WHO have to come physically to work through our facilities and to pronounce that we have reached a maturity level and that will be not too far from now”.

“In terms of new standard regarding vaccine production, Yes science is not static, it is dynamic, medical science is not static, we produced yellow fever vaccine before in Nigeria”.

“The rules have changed and the rule is that anybody that wants to produce malaria vaccine must have a strong regulatory body. That is why we had so many recommendations that we have been working on to meet”.

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