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The Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has said that it is working hard to ensure that Nigerians have access to the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccines when available.

Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, Director-General of NCDC, gave the assurance during the Task (PTF) briefing on COVID-19 on Monday in Abuja.

Ihekweazu said that the centre was working with the global community to ensure access.

He disclosed that on research and development of a vaccine against COVID-19 by the global scientific community showed that results on a possible vaccine were expected in the fourth quarter of 2020.

The DG, while noting that a vaccine was the best weapon in taming the virus, however, stressed that equitable access was key.

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He added that the health agency was working together with other colleagues around the continent, through the Africa CDC, to start advocating for some of the trials to be done with African institutions in the short term.

He said: “To do this, we have to build capacity, gather sufficient data and include African institutions in these efforts.

“We have to start preparing the Nigerian population for vaccine delivery when it becomes available.

“Access is a very key issue when it comes to vaccines; that a vaccine is developed does not necessarily translate to being available to those that need it the most.

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“So, through the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator, the World Health Organisation (WHO) is working with GAVI to ensure that vaccines are available to countries regardless of their ability to pay.”

Recall that GAVI, an international organisation – a global Vaccine Alliance, bringing together public and private sectors with the shared goal of creating equal access to new and underused vaccines for children living in the world’s poorest countries.

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Abass Sulaiman Adegoke, well known as Adegoke is a student of Federal Polytechnic Ede studying Civil Engineering, He is a media enthusiast, loves traveling, and has a special interest in personal development.

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Again, Boko Haram ambush Borno governor’s convoy

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Two days after an attack on the convoy of his officials, the convoy of the Borno State Governor, Babagana Zulum, was ambushed Sunday by gunmen suspected to be members of the Boko Haram.

The ambush occurred as the governor’s convoy was departing Baga town in Kukawa Local Government Area.

At least 15 security personnel had died in an ambush on Friday as a convoy of the governor was driving towards Baga town to participate in the official relocation of IDP back to their reclaimed communities after years of displacement.

The Friday ambush was condemned by Muhammadu Buhari who suggested sabotage of Mr Zulum’a efforts as governor.

Sources familiar with the latest incident said the attack happened near a village called Cross-Kauwa.

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Cross-Kauwa is a few kilometres from a location called Mile-4, where the Nigerian military has its biggest camp in that area.

“As we approached Cross-Kauwa an explosive believed to be landmine detonated and was immediately followed with the serious firing of guns from all sides,” said a government official who does not want to be named in this report.

“It was so terrifying that some of the security details in the convoy engaged in a brief moment of argument as to whether to make a U-turn and return to Baga or we should charge through. It was later decided that we had to forge on despite the shooting. That was how we charged through the ambush, and most of our vehicles had their tires deflated or riddled with bullets. We did not stop until we got to Monguno town.”

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The source said there was no death from Sunday’s failed ambush.

“Thank God there was no death except some few injuries,” another survivor, Sadiq Abubakar, said,

“About three vehicles escaped with shattered windscreens, while the Press Crew bus conveying journalists, had flat tyres. A military gun truck was also severely hit, while a soldier sustained a bullet wound on his shoulder.”

The governor and his entourage have since arrived in Maiduguri.

 

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More details of the latest incident will be provided in subsequent updates.

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BREAKING: Labour suspends nationwide strike, protests (PHOTOS)

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Labour Congress, NLC, has suspended its planned nationwide strike that would have started today, Monday, September 28, in protest against the hike in pump price of fuel and electricity tariff.

Earlier, there were indications that the Federal Government and NLC might reach an agreement to avert the looming nationwide strike.

The meeting, which started at about 8:30 pm on Sunday and spilled over till Monday morning had Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha; Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed; Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo; Minister of State for Power, Godwin Jeddy-Agba and Group Managing Director of the NNPC.

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The Minister of State, Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo(SAN) tweeted that there was hope the industrial crisis might be avoided.

He stated on his verified Twitter handle(@fkeyamo): “Still negotiating with labour at exactly 12.34am. Some progress have been made. Concrete proposals on the table from both sides. “Details being worked on by the temporary Secretariat. Gradually moving towards a point of convergence. Let’s hope….”

Furthermore, a source told Vanguard that it is possible the tariff will be suspended for two weeks, but said nothing specific about fuel pump price.

The source also said a joint government/Labour committee will be set up to review the issues within those two weeks.

Vanguard also learned that a communique is being hammered out, an indication that some sort of agreement had been arrived at.

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A communiqué, read by the minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, after the meeting, disclosed that government agreed to suspend electricity tariff hike for two weeks pending when a committee set up would examine the justifications for the new policy in view of the need for the validation of the basis for the new cost-reflective tariff as a of the conflicting information from the fields which appeared different from the presented to justify the new policy by NERC.

He, however, noted that total deregulation in the downstream sector remains, adding that palliatives would be offered to Nigerian workers to cushion the effects of burden.

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Details of the agreement reached by parties below.

 

 

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