Nigerian officials have lost the list of victims to be compensated under Pfizer's $75 million settlement with the Kano State government following the Trovan meningitis trials in that country. The money was to be paid by Oct. 15, but the process has now been stretched out a further three months "because of some unforeseen hitches," according to the AllAfrica news site.
Anyone applying for compensation from the settlement fund must now demonstrate that they received Pfizer's experimental vaccine in the first place:
... seven criteria have been laid down to identify the victims, including DNA, as demanded by Pfizer.Back story: The case stems from tests Pfizer did in 1996 during a meningitis outbreak in the African nation. Eleven children died. Trovan's use was restricted in the U.S. and banned in Europe. The events may have inspired the book and movie, The Constant Gardener. The compensation process has been plagued by rumor for the last year. At one point, fake lists of victims hoping to get rich quick were circulating in Nigeria. There is doubt as to the total number of victims on the list; estimates range from 57 to 200.
This report suggests that Pfizer has kept its copy of the list, but that Nigerian officials don't want to rely solely upon it.
About $40 million of the settlement will be controlled by Nigerian government officials. The funds will be distributed by a board made up equally of Pfizer and Nigeria appointees.
- See previous BNET stories on the Pfizer Trovan case:
- UPDATED: Pfizer Settles Trovan Case for $75M; Nigerian Kleptocrats to Get $40M
- Pfizer's Trovan Settlement Demands Irk Nigerian Kleptocrats
- Pfizer Settlement in Trovan Case Interrupted by Judge Who Wants Fairness Hearing
- Pfizer's Flip-Flop on the Trovan Settlement
- Pfizer Close to Settling Trovan Case in Nigeria? Perhaps Not
- Claim: LeCarre's "The Constant Gardener" Was Based on Pfizer Trovan Case