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Govt Gives Conditions For States To Get COVID-19 Vaccines

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Denmark, Norway, Iceland Suspend Use Of AstraZeneca COVID-19 Vaccine

The Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 Management has said that only states that have ready facilities and are prepared will be given vaccines .

Nigeria is expecting the delivery of 3.92 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccine today. It is the first batch of the 129 million doses of vaccine the country is expecting to curb the spread of COVID-19.

No fewer than 70 per cent of Nigeria’s over 200 million population is targeted for vaccination between now and end of next year.

There will, however, be no vaccination for people under the age of 18 years.

The PTF spoke at a news conference yesterday on the preparation for the distribution of vaccine and vaccination. It said President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo would be publicly vaccinated to give Nigerians confidence on the safety of the vaccine.

Governors, ministers, religious leaders and traditional rulers will also take jabs of the vaccine which the National Agency for Food Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has certified fit for use.

Executive Director/CEO of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Dr Faisal Shuaib, said: “Vaccine distribution to the states for the phase one vaccination process will begin. This phase is the vaccination of all frontline health workers, their supporting staff and strategic leaders.

“Deployment of vaccines to the states will be based on the assessment of their level of preparedness. Some of the parameters that will be used for the assessment includes adequate maintenance of cold chain storage facilities, adequate operation for logistics transportation to the ward and health facilities, adequate security in place during transportation and at the vaccination site, completion of training of health workers, efficient social mobilization activities in place, and adherence to protocol for vaccine deployment.

“Working with CACOVID, the private sector has made plans to transport the vaccines to the states by air. States without a functional airport will have their vaccines transported by road using vans fitted with cold chain cabins from the nearest airport in their states.

“The vaccines will be stored at the state cold store from where they will be transported by road to LGA cold stores. All of these cold stores will have security details to protect these valuable national assets. Once activities are commenced in the states, there will be strict monitoring by the Presidential Task Force, the Federal Ministry of Health, NCDC, NPHCDA, independent bodies such as the EFCC, DSS, ICPC and Civil Society Organisations, along with all the relevant line ministries.

READ ALSO: Kidnapped Zamfara Schoolgirls Regain Freedom

“The states, health facility, and health workers that are identified as defaulting from the standard protocol and the guidelines for this phase one of this vaccination will be sanctioned.

“It is worthy to note that at each phase of the vaccination, the level of preparedness of the states will be assessed before vaccines are deployed. There will also be accountability measures put in place to ensure strict compliance to the vaccination process. If we are not careful, we will not be able to ensure that the vaccines reach those who critically need them the most.”

He, however, noted that there was no fixed number of doses to be given to states.

The Minister of State for Health, Dr Olorunnimbe Mamora, urged private organizations not to import vaccines into the country for now because the Federal Government was expecting enough vaccines to cater for Nigerians, with the option to increase supply if the need arose.

“All vaccines coming into Nigeria will arrive only by the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja. Arrival at any other airport will not be allowed and sure to be confiscated by the customs. It is important to have an orderly, disciplined rollout to avoid chaos in the immunization scene,” he said.

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Tinubu Approves N70,000 Minimum Wage

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BREAKING: Dogara, Babachir Lead Northern Christians Against Tinubu's Muslim-Muslim Ticket

By John Michael Ojo

The Federal Government on Thursday, pegged the new national minimum wage at N70,000.

This was made known by Mr Bayo Onanuga, a Special Adviser to President Bola Tinubu on Information and Strategy, in a statement posted on X, formerly known as Twitter.

“President Bola Tinubu has approved N70,000 minimum wage for Nigerian workers with promise to review the national minimum wage law every three years.

“President Tinubu also promised to find ways to assist the private sector and the sub-nationals to pay the minimum wage.

“President Tinubu announced the decisions at the meeting held with leaders of TUC and NLC on Thursday in Abuja, the second time the parties met in 7 days,” the statement read.

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Olaopa Urges Youths To Shun Japa Syndrome, Prepare For Leadership

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Prof. Tunji Olaopa flanked by Hon Abike Dabiri (left )and Prof. Oladapo Afolabi , former Head of Service of the Federation ( right) at the event on Thursday.

The Chairman of the Federal Civil Service Commission, Prof. Tunji Olaopa, has urged youths to prepare for leadership positions early in life instead of travelling overseas to seek opportunities, a development that is popularly known as the Japa syndrome.

The seasoned bureaucrat and former federal permanent secretary said that opportunities abound for youths but that they could only access them when they begin early .

According to Olaopa who spoke on Thursday during the 2023/2024 graduation of KIA Lakeside Academy in Abuja, these opportunities will elude the youths if they opt to go and wander on the streets of foreign countries. He said : ” In the civil service I am very familiar with, people grow old and retire every day. We need youths to fill such vacancies that the old people leave behind . If all the youths go abroad to be doing menial jobs, do we go to Ghana and other neighbouring countries to employ their youths?

Prof. Tunji Olaopa and Prof. Oladapo Afolabi, former Head of Service of the Federation at the event.

He said that under his leadership of the Federal Civil Service, there is so  much hope for youths to access federal jobs. He said he had decided to maintain a policy of transparency and equity in making jobs in the civil service available for all eligible Nigerian youths through open advertisement.

He said in the area of political leadership, the older generation could not keep on dominating the sector. He said that the youths would be need to replace the old political leaders as they quit the scene.

According to him, the ability to prepare early for leadership goes hand in hand with a clear vision. He said nobody could prepare for anything if there is no clear vision of where they are going or what they want.

He said people who reach great heights in life always have a clear vision of where they are going early in life and they work towards it. He gave the example of former United States President Bill Clinton who as a youth had a clear vision of being his nation’s leader.

According to Olaopa, past and current leaders in Nigeria have had early in their youths clear visions of what they want in life. He said it was this clear visions early in life that made them trailblazers in different areas of life. In politics he cited Chief Obafemi Awolowo , Dr Nnamdi Azikiwe and others. He said that these were trailblazers in their youth. He said in business, young people have become trailblazers.

He said that because of the opportunities the current world offers, youths do not need to become old people before reaching great heights in life. According to him, youths have become trailblazers in technology . He mentioned the examples of Zuckerberg of Facebook, Elon Musk and a younger Bill Gates.

Talking about breaking the glass ceiling, Olaopa said that no gender barrier should stop anyone from reaching the summit of life. He said many women in the past and the present have been trailblazers. He mentioned Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti. Dora Akunyili,l and Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala. He said unlike in the past , many bank CEOs in Nigeria are currently women.

However, Olaopa said that nobody could be a trailblazer without preparation. He said this preparation comes in the form of education. He quoted Nelson Mandela who once observed that “Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world.” He said if in the past people we regard as great today could get education despite the huge barriers they were faced with, youths of today have no excuse. He said Awolowo was faced with a huge educational disadvantage which he overcame by studying at home . He said Azikiwe had to find his way overseas where he suffered to educate himself. According to him, one of the greatest lawyers today in Nigeria is Chief Afe Babalola. He said Babalola overcame his challenges by studying at home and that today he owns one of the best universities in the country.

According to him, youths who lack the opportunity of going to formal university classrooms can avail themselves of the opportunities offered by the open university system that the Federal Government supports .

He said that in fact President Bola Tinubu has demonstrated his interest in the education of the less-privileged through his government’s Student loan scheme. He said that youths who desire to acquire university education but have no sponsors can use that scheme.

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Tinubu Appoints Walson-Jack Head Of Service As Yemi-Esan Retires

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Walson-Jack

As the current Head of Service Folasade Yemi-Esan, CFR, is due to retire on August 13, 2024, President Bola Tinubu has approved her replacement. She is Mrs. Didi Esther Walson-Jack.

Mrs. Walson-Jack was appointed as Federal Permanent Secretary in 2017 and has served in several Ministries.

While thanking Yemi-Esan  for her stewardship, President Tinubu tasked the incoming Head of Service to discharge her duties with innovative flair, integrity, and stringent adherence to the extant rules and regulations of the Civil Service of the Federation.

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