NASS orders health ministry to stop spending N10bn on COVID-19 vaccine production

The National Assembly Joint Committee on Health has asked the Ministry of Health to suspend further action on the plans to utilise the N10 billion released to them by the Ministry of Finance, to fund the production of COVID-19 vaccines.

The committee took the decision yesterday, following its dis-satisfaction with the explanation of the Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire on how the N10 billion will be utilised.

Chairman Senate Committee on Health, Ibrahim Oloriegbe said the committee is dis-satisfied with the explanation of the Minister and has directed that the money should not be spent until the Ministry can state clearly, what the money will be used for.  

The Health Minister had earlier during one of the briefings of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 that the N10 billion was released for local production of COVID-19 vaccines.

The Minister, at the meeting, said the money was part of an agreement between the Federal Government and a foreign partner, May and Baker Plc for the production of bio-vaccines, saying the ministry is acting on a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Federal Government and the foreign partner for the production of the bio vaccines. 

The Senate Committee, however, expressed dis-satisfaction with the explanation of the Health Minister insisting the N10 billion should not be spent until a detailed plan is made available.

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