The Federal Government has commenced the construction of vaccine hubs in Abuja, Lagos, and Kano states for the storage of vaccines in the country.
The FG said the hubs will help to expand vaccine storage capacity at the national level in Nigeria.
Speaking at the groundbreaking ceremony of the Abuja hub on Thursday, the Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire said Nigeria needs sufficient storage space for vaccines and injection materials for efficient implementation of immunisation programmes.
Dr Ehanire said “The supply chain challenges highlighted by the COVID-19 vaccination effort also underline the need for massive expansion of storage space which will confer a measure of resilience in the system.
“In recognition of the need for resilience in the system, the country following detailed analysis decided on a system redesign which includes the construction of three mega stores at the national level, deployment of optimised cold chain equipment at the health facilities, an efficient distribution system and the deployment of an electronic logistics management information system to provide visibility across the supply chain.
“This ground-breaking ceremony is a significant milestone of the system redesign journey. GAVI’s support in funding the construction of two of the three mega stores Abuja and Kano hubs is therefore much appreciated.”
Also, the Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency, Dr Faisal Shuaib said, work has commenced on the construction of the Lagos Hub with the World Bank supporting the oversight of the process.
Dr Shuaib said funding for the Abuja and Kano hubs is provided by the Gavi Alliance within the country’s Health System strengthening support.
While acknowledging the technical support of the UNICEF supply division in reviewing the designs of the hubs and provision of procurement services support, he said, “The procurement processes for the engagement of competent vendors for the Kano hub project have commenced, and we expect to break ground on that project too in a short while.
“Meanwhile, the deployment of the Electronic Logistics Management Information Systems is ongoing as expected. The country’s supply chain system redesign is progressing satisfactorily, again with strong political support from the highest level of government and the untiring support of our implementing and donor partners. All support, technical and funding are highly appreciated.”