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Expert urges ministry to investigate COVID-19 vaccine’s effects on athletes

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The concerns raised by some stakeholders over the side effects of COVID-19 vaccines on athletes is enough reason for the sports ministry to investigate the claims and protect Nigerian athletes preparing for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, a sports medicine expert, Bukola Bojuwoye, has said.

Bojuwoye, who is Nigerian Rugby Football national team doctor, wants the ministry to ask relevant questions and ascertain if the vaccines listed for the country’s athletes will not inhibit their performance at the Tokyo Olympics.
The doctor acknowledged that the vaccines currently being distributed across the world would aid in eliminating the dangers posed by COVID-19, added, however, that Nigerian sports administrators should verify the quality of vaccines administered to athletes. This, he said, would make it psychologically safe for Team Nigeria to excel in Japan.

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“I don’t feel the COVID-19 vaccines in circulation will have any side effect on athletes taking part at the Olympics.

“Sports men and women in other parts of the world have taken the vaccines and are yet to report any side effects. Although individual reactions to vaccines vary, I think what the ministry of sports and the relevant health authorities should be doing now before the Olympics is to ascertain the particular vaccines that would be better for Nigerian athletes to use.

“It is good the vaccines are out now because it would help reduce the spread of COVID-19 within and outside the sporting arena. Athletes are motivated to excel in sports when there is no negative thoughts in their mind,” he said.

The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games will hold from July 3 to August 8, 2021. It was postponed from 2020 to 2021 due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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