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Edo okays AstraZeneca vaccine as governor, others take first jabs

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Edo State Government has declared that the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine is safe as Governor Godwin Obaseki and the Deputy Governor, Philip Shaibu, yesterday, received their first jabs of the vaccine.

The state received the first batch of 81, 080 doses of the vaccine from the Federal Government on Wednesday, March 10, 2021, to be administered to about 40,000 people, as each person was expected to take two doses within four and 12 weeks.

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Edo first lady, Mrs. Betsy Obaseki and the Deputy Governor’s wife, Mrs. Maryann Shaibu, Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Osarodion Ogie, Chief Judge of the state, Justice Esther Edigin, and Speaker, House of Assembly, Marcus Onobun, were inoculated against the virus.

Obaseki inoculated with first jab of the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine. Photo: TWITTER/GOVERNOROBASEKI

Senators Matthew Urhoghide, Clifford Ordia and Ehigie Uzamere, Archbishop, Metropolitan See of Benin, Rev. Augustine Akubeze, former National President, Pentecostal Fellowship (PFN), Rev. Felix Omobude, Chief Imam of Benin City, Abdufatah Enabulele, and Edo State Police Commissioner (CP), Philip Agbadu, among others, also received the vaccine.

After receiving the jab at Government House, Benin City, Governor Obaseki rolled out the vaccine in the state, insisting that the vaccine was safe.

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“The vaccine is safe. We understand the politics of vaccination, particularly as it relates to the COVID-19 pandemic. When polio vaccine was introduced several years ago, people expressed the same fear and uncertainty.

“However, the world went ahead with vaccinating against polio. It may not have been 100 per cent, but today we have kicked out polio from our society. So, there is nothing new with the vaccine and the politics around it,” he stated.

Speaking, State Coordinator of the World Health Organisation (WHO), Faith Ireye, said the WHO had endorsed the vaccine as safe and effective for emergency use and urged residents to disregard the rumours and misinformation about it and get vaccinated.

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Onobun said: “There was little apprehension before, but after taking the vaccine, I feel good and well and I encourage everyone to be vaccinated.”

On his part, Urhoghide said: “The doubts about the vaccines are unfounded. It is a conspiracy against its design. The type being taken here suits our people and it is taken all over the world. We are in a dire situation and we should not play politics with it.”

Akubeze and Enabulele charged their followers to ensure that they were vaccinated against the virus, noting that the vaccine was safe.

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