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Covid-19 vaccine will be available for Namibians – Shangula

Namibia may rest assured that a vaccine will be available not earlier than next year, health minister Kalumbi Shangula has told Eagle FM, as yet another biotech firm, AstraZeneca, announced a vaccine breakthrough.
This week, the 20 biggest countries (G20) have met to discuss and commit to the availability of a vaccine for the poorest nations.
“Yes, they are vaccines which have been proven to prevent the infection from Covid-19. I must also state the fact that these vaccines are still pending approval which means as we stand today there is no vaccine which we can say we are going to access and give to the Namibians,” said Shangula.
“Once the process of approval has been concluded then the vaccine will be available. To the question as to when Namibia will have them (vaccines) I will say it will not be earlier than next year. There are a lot of processes to go through. We have signed up with the COVAX facility which will make it easier for us to access the vaccine. So, we are still waiting for that process to be concluded but in the meantime, we have a vaccine which is a combination of washing hands, sanitizing, wearing masks and social distancing.”
Experts in South Africa have also voiced that a vaccine would be available in the second quarter of 2021.
The US ambassador to Namibia, Lisa Johnson, speaking to Eagle FM yesterday said it was “exciting that many vaccines are in trial right now and so we are looking forward to the emergency authorized use being approved”.
“And our goal in Namibia is to ensure that we have a safe and effective vaccine and it can be distributed everywhere. It really is a worldwide issue and we are providing technical assistance to the ministry of health and social services to help them import and decide how best to distribute a vaccine when one is available,” she said.

Wonder Guchu

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