In a viral video, the governor while addressing a crowd, doubted the authenticity of the vaccine, saying there is no cure for HIV and many other diseases troubling mankind.
“Vaccines are being produced in less than one year of COVID-19. There is no vaccine yet for HIV, malaria, cancer, headache and for several other diseases that are killing us. They want to use the (COVID-19) vaccines to introduce the disease that will kill you and us. God forbid,” Yahaya Bello said.
“We should draw our minds back to what happened in Kano during the Pfizer polio vaccines that crippled and killed our children. We have learned our lessons.
“If they say they are taking the vaccines in the public allow them take their vaccines. Don’t say I said you should not take it but if you want to take it open your eyes before you take the vaccines.”
In a Channel’s TV programme last December, he questioned the need for Nigeria to procure COVID-19 vaccines. Then he backed his argument with an analogy of varying temperatures between Nigeria and other climes, saying that “what is applicable over there may not work in Nigeria”.
“We don’t need to participate in this marketing of COVID-19 vaccine. We should channel the money we want use to buy the vaccines to other things. The Presidential Task Force (PTF) should give the right advice to the president.”
The governor also said “it is better to invest in tackling more deadly diseases that are killing people everyday, not COVID-19 that has 99.9 per cent recovery rate.”
Also, in his New Year broadcast, Yahaya Bello said it would be irresponsible of his government to see COVID-19 as a definer of 2020. He said Kogi will not respond to the second wave of the virus with “mass hysteria”.
The governor had also asked the federal government to focus more on reviving the economy than on how to procure COVID-19 vaccines.
Kogi is one the states where COVID-19 tests are next-to-nil as the governor insists that there is no coronavirus in the state. He has also repeatedly violated social distancing rules, among other protocol to curb the spread of the virus.
According to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, Nigeria has recorded over 110,000 COVID-19 — although more than 89,000 infected persons have been discharged. Over 1,400 persons have died of the disease in Nigeria.