Trovan lawsuit stalls

A lawsuit filed by the Nigerian victims of the 1996 Trovan meningitis vaccine test hit a snag after officials with Federal High Court in Abuja, Nigeria, set aside the service of the court’s processes on Pfizer Specialties.

Justice Gabriel Kolawole, reports, set aside the processes after an objection by Pfizer Specialties’ counsel, Chief Anthony Idigbe, who challenged the proprietary of the service. Kolawole told that the service was crucial to adjudication in any case.

The judge, however, refused a similar application to set aside the service of the process on the Kano State Government.

Following an agreement by Pfizer to compensate the victims of the vaccine test, additional people came forward to file fresh lawsuits, seeking $383 billion in total.

Approximately 200 deaths were recorded as part of the vaccine test while other participants suffered varying degrees of disability as a result of the test.

The alleged victims have challenged a proposal by Pfizer to conduct DNA tests to determine if they are actually victims of the Trovan vaccine. The need for the tests arises from a sudden increase in the number of those claiming to be victims. The victims, however, have argued that Pfizer could not be trusted with their DNA.

Justice Kolawole has adjourned further ruling on other interim applications pending before the court.