By Amina Aminu
More men are taking COVID-19 vaccine than women at Mohammed Abdullahi Wase Teaching Hospital, Nasarawa, Kano State, the COVID-19 Vaccination Ward Focal Person, Mr Shehu Abdul, has said.
Abdul stated this when journalists visited the facility in Kano on Friday.
He explained that the facility began COVID-19 vaccination on Aug. 20, adding that so far, only a few females have taken the vaccine compared to the men.
He attributed the development to lack of sufficient awareness and misinformation about the vaccines.
He urged media organisations to intensify awareness campaigns on the benefits of the vaccine against the deadly virus, with focus on women.
On the uptake of the vaccine, Abdul said that more people were responding, adding that the demand has been on the increase with an average of 50 people daily between Aug. 20 and Sept. 9 at the facility.
“For example, when we began the vaccination exercise in August, only 15 people showed up: 12 male and three female.
“The number increased to 25 by Aug. 29; five female and 20 male and further increased significantly to 84 by Aug. 30; 18 female, 66 male.
“However, the number has been declining with 82 recorded on Aug. 31: 16 female, 66 male; 67 on Sept.1: 15 female, 52 male, and 30 on Sept. 9: 12 female and 18 male,” he said.
A female resident, Ms Afiniki Tabat, said she would not take the vaccine because she did not trust it, adding that her African blood will protect her from COVID-19.
Tabat said that even if she contracted the virus, she would be healed without taking any medication because the disease does not affect African people compared to white men.
“We are African, the vaccine is in our blood already,” she said.
Mr Safuwa Abdullahi, another resident who took the first dose of the vaccine at the facility, said he took it in compliance with government guidelines.
Abdullahi, who appealed to other people to do the same, acknowledged that COVID-19 was real, and people were dying from it.
“The government is providing the vaccines free and directed that we all take it to protect ourselves and our loved ones.
“Although a lot of people have been skeptical about taking the vaccines due misinformation. I still think the right thing to do is to take the vaccine.
“We can support the government to win the fight against the virus by taking the vaccine and encourage others to do the same,” he said.
The Chief Immunisation Officer, Nasarawa Local Government Council, Mr Sani Managge, told journalists that no fewer than 3,848 people have been vaccinated in the last 13 days across the LGA.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Child Rights Information Bureau (CRIB), Federal Ministry of Information and Culture, in collaboration with UNICEF is mobilising journalists to create demand for COVID-19 vaccines.
The visit to the facility was part of a two-day Media Dialogue on demand creation for COVID-19 vaccines in Kano, for the participants to see firsthand happenings at vaccination sites.
Communication Specialist, UNICEF Country Office, Mr Geoffrey Njoku, said that the objective of the media dialogue was for journalists to use their media platforms to promote uptake of the vaccines.
“The effort is for journalists to use their platforms to advocate to the federal and state governments to provide logistics and operation support for the delivery of the vaccines.
“We also want journalists to use their platforms to allay fears by anarchists and conspiracy theorists about the safety of the vaccines,” he said.
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