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» 16.10.2008 - Nigeria has hope of eradicating polio
» 05.03.2007 - Nigerian programme increases polio immunisation

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Health | Society

Nigerians confirm polio vaccine is safe

afrol News, 5 January - The Nigerian government has announced that laboratory tests made in the country showed that the polio vaccine was uncontaminated, rejecting earlier claims by a Shari'a court. Vaccination can now continue.

Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo has made a statement saying that accusations against the polio vaccine - which has been branded unsafe, and containing HIV and anti fertility agents - are all far from the truth.

According to a press release sent out to Nigerian media last week, President Obasanjo had told a group of Nigerian Youths that the polio vaccine is safe and uncontaminated with neither HIV/AIDS virus nor anti-fertility.

Doctors at the National hospital Abuja last week had announced their findings on the test and have certified the drug as safe and uncontaminated with neither anti-fertility hormones nor HIV virus.

Nigerian government ordered for the test after an Islamic cleric in Northern Nigeria alleged that the vaccine was not safe. The Supreme Council for Shari'a accused the US government of contaminating the population growth of especially the Muslims.

The Shari'a Court's announcement made the ongoing polio vaccination campaign in Northern Nigeria, carried out by the World Health Organisation (WHO), came to a halt. Several local governments and wide parts of the population rejected the vaccine, which has been used on a world wide basis.

It was reported that WHO has warned that the continued resistance of the polio vaccine by some North Nigerian states was endangering the lives of many children in West African neighbour countries. WHO has lately reported on a renewed spread of the disease in West Africa.

The WHO is currently performing polio vaccination in the last few areas where the deadly disease still exists, including some pockets in Western Africa. The UN agency aims at totally exterminating the disease within few years.

The Nigerian government was heavily criticised internationally for giving in to the accusations of the Shari'a court. WHO protested maintaining the vaccine was totally safe and had previously been used all over the world.

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