President Muhammadu Buhari will join other world leaders to push for global COVID-19 vaccine equity at the ongoing United Nation (UN) General Assembly high-level meetings.
The Permanent Representative of Nigeria in the UN, Prof. Tijjani Muhammad-Bande, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in New York that the issue of equal access to vaccines was paramount to the president.
The theme for the 2021 General Assembly is, “Building Resilience through Hope – To Recover from COVID-19, Rebuild Sustainably, Respond to the Needs of the Planet, Respect the Rights of People and Revitalise the United Nations”.
“There is nothing more challenging and more pressing now than the global health; it is extremely urgent.
“So, President Muhammadu Buhari will join others and push for global vaccine equity,’’ the envoy said.
Buhari arrived New York on Sunday for the 76th Session of the UN General Assembly.
He is expected to address the General Assembly on the fourth day on Friday when he would speak on the theme of the conference and other global issues.
According to Bande, Nigeria is ready to join other Member States highlight the challenges facing the global community and its contributions to addressing the challenges.
He said Nigeria would also contribute to global discussions on climate change, peace and security at the meetings.
“Nigeria is very prepared for the 76th session of the Assembly. It is a challenge for all countries but Nigeria is navigating all the roles relating to attendance and participating in terms of modalities.’’
Bande added that Nigeria would be sharing success stories with the Assembly on its role in stabilising the West African region, joining others in bringing peace and security to the region.
He said the world had also been listening to Nigeria’s voice on the global stage.
He cited the appointment of the Director-General of World Trade Organisation, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala and the President of African Development Bank, Dr Akinwumi Adesina, among others.
“We have a voice that is listened to. We have seen Dr Okonjo-Iweala; it is an attestation of what Nigeria can do. We have also seen how Adesina has done extremely well,’’ the envoy said.
“Nigeria has also given a voice to Africa’s issues and third world nations in relation to peace, justice and development.
“Nigeria, therefore, has a very important role to play at the global debates as a Member State, as a country in West Africa and as a country in Africa.’’
He said Nigeria had given a voice to African issues and would continue to reiterate its calls for global issues like counter-terrorism in the region and around the world.