FG reads riot act to buyers, sellers of COVID-19 vaccination card
...arrests health official, others illegally issuing vaccine card
The federal government has vowed to fish out and prosecute any person that attempts to fraudulently sell or purchase COVID-19 vaccination cards without taking the vaccine.
Faisal Shuaib, executive director, National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA), said the agency is collaborating with the State Security Services (SSS), the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), and other law enforcement agencies to investigate and prosecute any person involved in the “criminal offence”
Shuaib said due to the increase in COVID-19 vaccination mandates globally, some “unscrupulous persons” have resorted to procuring the COVID-19 vaccination cards, without receiving the COVID-19 vaccines.
He warned that these attempts could discredit the vaccination programme of Nigeria and therefore warned all citizens to desist from it.
“Possession of vaccination cards without receiving the vaccines is criminal and punishable by law. NPHCDA and the Presidential Steering Committee strongly condemn these fraudulent attempts and are urging those attempting such acts to desist henceforth. We are taking this seriously.
“We will name and shame any individual involved”, he said, while stressing that the government has zero-tolerance for vaccination card racketeering.
The ED further informed that a staff of the FCT State Primary Healthcare Development Board has been arrested for allegedly procuring vaccination cards illegally and an investigation on the matter has begun.
To this end he urged all Nigerians to take responsibility and report any fraudulent attempts around them to the nearest law enforcement agency or NPHCDA through the following channels:
COVID-19 hotline: 07002201122 NPHCDA website: www.nphcda.gov.ng/complaints .
He added that the government is proposing to establish a task force to randomly investigate potential areas where the crime could be committed.
Shuaib also said the agency will track the number of vaccines and vaccination cards deployed to health facilities across the country; and if any mismatch is found, the facility will be held responsible.
He reiterated that the ongoing COVID-19 vaccination and the vaccination cards are free of charge at all designated COVID-19 vaccination sites across the 36 states of the Federation and the FCT.
“Let me state at this juncture, that the corporate vaccination for Ministries, Departments, Agencies, public and private corporate organizations is still ongoing and is provided free of charge. Relevant MDAs, public and private corporate organizations should kindly visit our website www.nphcda.gov.ng and click on the corporate vaccination tab to complete the necessary information that would help in the deployment of teams to their offices”, Shuaib said.
Also speaking, the acting Executive Secretary of the FCT Primary Healthcare Development Board, Iwot Ndeayo said the individual who was arrested a few days ago and other members of his team are currently being investigated.
“We have located the team and the team members, as I speak to you, we are on top of the matter. We are investigating the extent of crime”, he said, warning that the board will not tolerate corruption.