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Nigeria missing from $4.4b W’Bank COVID-19 vaccine package

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NIGERIA is poised to miss out of countries slated to benefit from World Bank’s $4.4 billion for purchase and deployment of COVID-19 vaccines to 51 developing countries.

  Those in the list are Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Benin, Cabo Verde, Cambodia, Comoros, the Republic of Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ecuador, El Salvador, Eswatini, Ethiopia, The Gambia, Georgia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Guyana, and Honduras.

  Others are Indonesia, Jordan, Kenya, Kosovo, the Kyrgyz Republic, Lao PDR, Lebanon, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Moldova, Mongolia, Mozambique, Nepal, Niger, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Rwanda, São Tomé e Príncipe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Tajikistan, Togo, Tunisia, Ukraine, Yemen, and Zambia.

  A statement issued yesterday by World Bank Managing Director of Operations, Axel van Trotsenburg, said that the global finance agency was financing the aid as part of its commitment to helping low and middle-income countries acquire and distribute vaccines while strengthening their health systems.

  Explaining that more than half of the latest financing comes from International Development Association (IDA), as part of the bank’s fund for the world’s poorest countries, Trotsenburg added that since the start of COVID-19, World Bank has approved more than $150 billion to fight the health, economic, and social impacts of the pandemic.

  “The World Bank is helping developing countries in every region of the world with vaccine purchase and rollout. Significant challenges still remain regarding vaccine deployment and hesitancy. We are taking action on all fronts to tackle these challenges, working in solidarity with international and regional partners to expedite doses to as many people as possible and to enhance disease surveillance, preparedness, and response,” he said.

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