British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, yesterday, announced what the United Kingdom termed ‘record funding’ to find a coronavirus vaccine to the tune of £210,000,000.
This is even as Johnson called on world leaders to collaborate to speed up vaccine development for coronavirus.
The British High Commission, Abuja, disclosed the development in a statement made available to newsmen by its Senior Press and Public Affairs Officer, Christopher Olaoluwa Ogunmodede.
“The United Kingdom is now the biggest contributor to the international coalition to find a vaccine, with £210,000,000 further funding announced.
“The United Kingdom is also funding to accelerate production of rapid tests and treatments for the virus, bringing the total amount of UK aid spent fighting to coronavirus to £544,000,000,” the British High Commission said.
Following the donation, Johnson said: “While our brilliant doctors and nurses fight coronavirus at home, this record British funding will help to find a vaccine for the entire world. UK medics and researchers are at the forefront of this pioneering work.
“My call to every G20 country and to governments around the world is to step up and help us defeat this virus.
“In the meantime, I want to repeat to everyone that they should stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives.”
Also speaking, the Secretary of State for International Development, Anne-Marie Trevelyan, said: “This UK Government support will be vital in efforts to find a coronavirus vaccine and treatments, which will ultimately help stop its spread around the world.
“We are backing experts, including in the UK, to find solutions as quickly as possible to this pandemic. This will ultimately help us to save lives in this country.”
On her part, the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Catriona Laing, said: “The Prime Minister’s announcement is both a show of the United Kingdom’s commitment to saving lives and protecting the most vulnerable, but also a call to nations around the world to follow our example.
“These efforts are absolutely vital to turning the tide on coronavirus, and directly help nations like Nigeria.”