A Professor of Virology and former vice chancellor of Redeemer’s University, Prof Oyewole Tomori, has described Nigeria’s selection as one of the African countries to receive MRNA technology for vaccine production as a catalyst to enhance research.
He said this on Saturday during a programme on Arise TV.
The World Organisation on Friday announced that six African countries, Egypt, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa and Tunisia would be the first on the continent to receive the technology needed to produce mRNA vaccines.
The technology transfer project, launched 2021 in Cape Town, aims to help low- and middle-income countries manufacture mRNA vaccines at scale and according to international standards.
mRNA is the advanced technology used by companies such as Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna for their COVID-19 shots.
Tomori said: “This is the best news so far for us in this country but one message I want to pass out is that when a country speaks with one voice, such a country will go far.
“This whole thing that came about was done by different groups of people.
“It was NAFDAC that alerted Bio Vaccine, while bio vaccine filled the form and conducted the interview and the government played the diplomatic role.
All those combined made it possible.
”“This development is a catalyst to move us forward in the area of skills training, financing, regulatory authorities and technology transfer to get us to where we need to be.
According to him, asides COVID-19, there are other issues and this is a platform to address other diseases.
“I’m more excited about this because we have done well this time.
The former Vice-Chancellor of the Redeemers University in Ede, however, urged the government to be consistent in its policies.
“We need consistency and sustainability in our policies because that is the only way we can sustain and improve on whatever gain that has been made.
“I hope the next government coming in will be able to continue from where this government stops and even do better than what they have done as regarding health,” he said.
mRNA Vaccine Production, will enhance research -Virologist