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'No vaccination card, no entry,' Edo Government imposes vaccine mandate

The government has trained 20 special teams to enforce the mandate.

Edo State governor, Godwin Obaseki [Edo State Government]

The Edo State government has announced that citizens unvaccinated with at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine will be barred from all state government owned facilities from Tuesday, September 15, 2021.

The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Dr Osamwonyi Irowa, said at a media briefing the mandate will help the state curb the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The government has trained 20 special teams to enforce the mandate across all 18 local government areas of the state.

The teams will scan and confirm the authenticity of vaccination cards and ensure those that are unvaccinated are refused entry.

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"If you have to enter the state secretariat you must have your vaccination card, we are going to implement this in all the key areas to ensure that we don't have persons being infected because the other person is being difficult," Irowa said.

The official appealed to citizens to get vaccinated so as to contain the spread of the disease, and lessen the severity of infection.

The imposition of the mandate was announced at the same time the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) raised alarm of people trying to procure cards without getting the vaccine.

NPHCDA CEO, Dr Faisal Shuaib, said reports of such a trade are already being investigated, and suspected buyers and sellers would be prosecuted by the government.

"No one needs to cut corners on COVID-19 vaccination. The vaccines are free, and the vaccination cards are given free of charge at any of our designated health facility after your vaccination," he said.

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Nigeria hopes to vaccinate over 110 million people by the end of 2022, but has only vaccinated 4,052,756 as of September 12.

The country has recorded over 200,000 COVID-19 infections since February 2020, with over 2,600 people dead.

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