The Lagos State Government is set to establish a world-class and best-in-Africa vaccine research centre to avoid depending on western nations for COVID-19 vaccines.Also, it plans to establish a mental health facility as part of critical measures to combat the COVID-19 pandemic in the State.
Mr. Gbenga Omotosho, the Lagos State Commissioner for Information & Strategy said at the 5th Annual Conference of the Guild of Corporate Online Publishers (GOCOP) in Lagos that the State Government also disbursed over N1 billion to Small & Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs) affected by the pandemic through the Lagos State Employment Trust.
Omotosho, who represented Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Executive Governor of Lagos State at the conference was emphatic that businesses are gradually coming back to life even as he conceded that full recovery would be difficult to predict given the still dangerous mode of the virus.
“During the outbreak of the pandemic, the Lagos State Government set up the Lagos Incident Command to collate vital information and data on the pandemic and thereafter kept Lagosians informed on regular basis. Today, we have 150 vaccination centres from the initial 65 as well as stepped up advocacy on the need for Lagosians to go for vaccination.”
He lamented that Africa has been unable to achieve herd immunity, which translates to 60 percent vaccination of the population partly due to fake news and conspiracy theories about the pandemic on the continent.
“We have the problem of fake news of the vaccine killing people and therefore not the solution to the COVID-19 pandemic. That is why we appreciate the support of the media in terms of information dissemination about the pandemic. We also need such critical support to combat the fake news about the virus, vaccination and recovery from the pandemic.”
Omotosho congratulated the EXCO and members of GOCOP for the 5th Annual Conference and pledged the support of the State Government going forward