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NSIA to invest $200m on local production of COVID vaccine, cancer centres

NSIA to invest $200m on local production of COVID vaccine, cancer centres
July 29
19:16 2021

Uche Orji, chief executive officer of National Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA), says the agency will invest $200 million into the local production of COVID vaccine and construction of cancer centres.

Orji made this disclosure during the weekly ministerial briefing organised by the presidential media team in Abuja on Thursday.

He said the fund would also be applied in local manufacturing of some other pharmaceutical products and procurement of medical equipment.

“We are trying to raise a $200 million fund; not just NSIA, there are other investors that have indicate interest so the documentation for getting the third party funds is ongoing,” he said.

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“In NSIA, we can sponsor, we can co-develop and we can just invest. We are looking at all three options; the more difficult ones, we will do ourselves and the easier ones we will look at some companies that already have existing infrastructure and work with them. 

“Some of these infrastructures are just so archaic and so far behind and it is better to just build the brand new as we did with the cancer centre in Lagos University Teaching Hospital, we just demolished it and started afresh. So these are all the things we need to do but we have established the fact that it is important, we will do that and I am certain we will complete something in healthcare this year.”

“There are three things we have done in healthcare. First of all, the NSIA has a Healthcare Investment Company, through which we initially wanted to tackle all the challenges in the health sector but we realized that if you take it all at once, you are probably not going to succeed. 

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“So, we decided to do two things, first of all, you showcase an area that is of interest to Nigerians and we took cancer and we went to Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) and said can we take over your cancer centre and rebuild it? Secondly, we now built two world-class diagnostic and radiology centres in Kano and Umuahia.

“I am happy to report that those centres have been successful. Initially, we hired a management team from South Africa, it didn’t work, we fired them and built our own management team.  At the moment all these are working well; the health company, LUTH cancer centre and the diagnostic centres.” 

Orji also shared the agency plans to build 20 cancer centres across the country, starting this year with three, with an intention to roll out seven more centres next year, then another 10 the following year.

The NSIA was set up by an act of Nigeria’s national assembly in 2011, with an objective to promote fiscal stability, build a savings base for future generations of Nigerians and enhance the development of Nigeria’s infrastructure.

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