The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) said 4.3 million children in Nigeria still miss out of routine vaccinations.
UNICEF stated that though Nigeria has made great strides in reducing deaths of under 5-year-old children from 158 to 120 per 1000 births between 2011 and 2016, but during the same period, vaccine immunization has declined.
The recent Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey conducted by the Government of Nigeria in 2016/17 showed that only 1 in 4 children in the country received all the recommended vaccines.
Immunization coverage for pentavalent vaccine between the 36 states varies dramatically from 80% in Lagos to 3% in Sokoto and is still below the recommended global goal of 90% in all the states.
Children who have never been vaccinated are at the greatest risk of contracting diseases such as measles, whooping cough, and tetanus, which may be fatal or lead to long-term debilitating effects on survivors.
Poverty, overcrowding, poor hygiene and sanitation as well as insufficient nutrition and healthcare increase the risk of diseases such as, pneumonia and measles; diseases that are easily preventable with vaccines.
UNICEF representative in Nigeria, Muhammed Fall stated that all girls and boys, no matter where they live or what their situations are, have the right to survive and thrive, safe from deadly diseases adding that vaccination acts as a shield, keeping families and communities safe.