A Kano-based group, Kungiyar Matasan Kano Advocacy Organisation, has kicked against the proposal to try the COVID-19 vaccine in the State.
In a statement signed by Comrade Alhassan Haruna Dambatta Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Kungiyar Matasan Kano, the group wondered why the people of the State should be used as Guinea pigs.
“Our attention has been drawn to a news item in the Media suggesting a proposed vaccine trial in Nigeria by WHO,” the group’s statement said.
“The vaccine trials is one of the efforts to discover a vaccine for the deadly Coronavirus and the trials are being supervised by the WHO which selected Nigeria as a ground to conduct these trials on some unlucky individuals whose lives are to be used as a laboratory specimen.
“We wouldn’t have become outraged, but the appearance of Kano State amongst states selected for the clinical trial of the COVID-19 vaccine in Nigeria got our attention the most and raised the need to set the record straight.
“Kano has suffered on various occasions in the past and equally has been neglected in the past, especially at the period of the devastation of the aftermath of these vaccine trials.
“In the recent past, people of Kano are yet to forget Pfizer’s clandestine drug trials which led to our people suffering from various ailments and medical conditions.
“The trials were made without proper vetting and approvals were never issued but Pfizer went ahead clandestinely and crippled our children and killed many innocent ones.
“But today, our dear state is once again being taunted as a possible ground for another medical jamboree and subjugation of the good people of Kano State to another round of trials of vaccines that are yet to be sufficiently proven as an effective means for the cure of the Coronavirus.
“What this simply means is that we the people of Kano state are still being regarded as guinea pigs that every Dick and Harry will turn to at the time of clinical trials of vaccines and drugs.
“Those whose families were crippled or killed because of Pfizer trials are yet to receive compensation a decade after but today the people of Kano state are selected for another round of vaccine trials only that this one is referred to as COVID-19 which remains the deadliest of the viruses discovered in recent past.
“We are astonished as to why this vaccine missed the road and found its way to Nigeria and unfortunately Kano State when Kano is not the origin of the virus neither was Kano recording mass death that will warrant a vaccine trial.
“We outrightly reject this WHO activity in our state and demand a withdrawal of our state’s name from the list of the states chosen to participate in this Coronavirus vaccine trials.
“The law has mandated us to ask proper questions when in need of answers especially those that are made on behalf of the voiceless, in view of this, therefore, various questions have been developed but the one needing an answer is whether the 15billion allocated to Kano state to fight COVID-19 was attached with conditions of vaccine trials, why Kano state?
“Why not China, the US or Europe where the devastation of the virus is enormous and are the index countries where the virus originated from and spread to Africa.
“Whilst we presently pay attention to the situation in our state, it remains not our business if these vaccine trials are conducted elsewhere, but in a situation where some individuals are ready to serve as willing tools for this vaccine trials, we would like to suggest it to be conducted on a well-set agreement between the willing tool and the authorities, proper compensations should be maintained and these should include an insurance cover for the willing individuals.
“The condition in Kano State caused by the spread of the Coronavirus seems under control and well managed, this can be verified from low death and low daily infection recorded and there is no doubt that Kano state will come out of this COVID-19 issue strong but what remains unacceptable is choosing the state as a colony for COVID-19 vaccine trials. This should be reversed.”