The Board of Biovaccines Nigeria Limited (BVNL) has said strategies have been put in place to ensure vaccines are produced within the quickest timeframe.
The board said it is also working, not only to meet the stipulated time fame, but to also ensure it produces vaccines of highest quality in a sustainable manner, which will be of no harm to Nigerians.
Biovaccines Nigeria Limited Nigeria had last year said it could roll out its first locally produced vaccines in July 2019, beginning with the drugs against Yellow fever, Tetanus Toxoid and Hepatitis B.
It, however, said that it would need to invest $50 million (N18.5 billion) to resuscitate a manufacturing line at the defunct National Vaccine Production Laboratory (NVPL) in Yaba, Lagos.
Chairman, Biovaccine Board, Prof. Oyewale Tomori, yesterday, at a press conference following the board’s second meeting held in Lagos, said the board has reviewed and approved business plans needed for the company to begin it activities, adding that the vaccine production requires highly technical and complex technology, which needs time to perfect.
He said although the required time for implementation of the vaccine production in the market would take a long time, expatriate and relevant government agencies have been engaged to shorten the process without making quality compromise.
Tomori said the board is mindful of the fact that many Nigerians and stakeholders in the health sector are in a hurry to see the country produce her own vaccines to ameliorate the huge burden posed by diseases, particularly on children and mothers, noting that board is putting strategies in place to deliver their expectations.
“We shall take calculated steps to ensure we get everything right.
We are already addressing the challenges from all angles so we don’t fall to where the old vaccine production company fell. We won’t follow the old system, we want to provide quality vaccines that will cause no harm to Nigerians,” he said.
Tomori said in order to ensure quality production for the first time, the team is working with foreign technical team, comprising of international expert vaccines and biologicals technology to develop and implement a robust business plan.
The Virologist noted that a robust feasibility studies have been undertaken by the team, as it evaluated all strategic options and recommendations that underpinned their strategic direction.
On the delay in production, the Director, Food and Drug Services, Federal Ministry of Health, Moshood Lawal, said it is to ensure the proper production without any for of compromise, adding that the project is a national project, which would be implemented in due time.
The Guardian News