By Yinka Adeniran, Ibadan

Oyo State Governor Seyi Makinde has received the AstraZeneca COVID-19 jab at the Executive Chamber of the Governor’s Office, Agodi Secretariat, flagging off the vaccination exercise in the state.

He said for states that have taken in their thousands  and are ahead, “we will surely overtake them”.

Executive Secretary, Oyo State Primary Healthcare Board Dr. Muideen Olatunji administered the vaccine on the governor.

The state received 127,740 doses of the vaccine from the Federal Government on March 10.

Explaining why the vaccination was delayed, Makinde said he ordered that a sterility test be done on the vaccines received because he wanted to be sure that the AstraZeneca, which came from India was properly handled and well-preserved till it got to the state.

Makinde said: “When I was reading the newspaper this morning, I saw that Oyo State has not given a single shot of the vaccine and zero was recorded for the state. Now, we, at least, have one for Oyo State.

“And for states that have taken in their thousands, and are ahead, we will surely overtake them.

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“Yes, I ordered for sterility test. Some people, even those close to me, were shading me on the social media. Even though I said I have low-tolerance for physical pain, I have high-tolerance for emotional pain.

“We did the test because when I asked questions about the origin of the vaccine, they said the batch sent to Nigeria came from India. It’s not that I don’t like India or don’t believe in their product, but was concerned about the handling.

“They said the vaccine should be stored at a particular temperature. I wanted to validate the vaccines that we will give to the people of Oyo State have been correctly handled. Our two labs here, the Virology and Biorepository labs in the University College Hospital, Ibadan, and they came with the same result that the vaccine is good and proper for the people of Oyo State and it didn’t take me 24hours to accept and agree to come for this vaccination exercise.”

Commissioner for Health Dr. Bashir Bello stated the result of the sterility test done by the state government at the virology and bio-repository lab at the University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan, confirmed that the vaccine received is free of any form of micro bacteria, fungi and is strictly for COVID-19.

Bayelsa State Governor Douye Diri also yesterday appealed to Nigerians to take the COVID-19 vaccines for the overall health of the citizenry.

Diri spoke after receiving the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine inside the Executive Chamber of the Government House, Yenagoa.

He advised the people that while they trust God for protection, they should also take the necessary steps to get protected against the virus by taking the vaccine.

He stated: “I have just taken the vaccine. The deputy governor has also taken it. May I now call on Bayelsans to go and take their jabs against the COVID-19 pandemic that is ravaging the world.”

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