Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Development Partners have called for equity in the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine. The partners note that underdeveloped countries should not be made to wait longer for the vaccines.
They argue that access to the Coronavirus Vaccine is a human rights issue and without the vaccine, the lives and livelihood opportunities of millions of people in Africa will be severely affected.
Speaking at the ceremony to hand over ambulances and essential supplies worth 1.87 Million Euros to the Ministry of Health, the IGAD Executive Secretary Workneh Gebeyehu said that in the next few months, all indications are that the ability to travel, to work and to do business internationally will depend on one’s vaccination status.
He says that IGAD’s position is that access to the Coronavirus vaccine should not be dependent on the economic capability of a country. He called on the partners to denounce “Vaccine Nationalism” in all its forms but rather ensure that the Covax vaccine is humanized and not monetized.
The European Union Head of Delegation Attilio Pacifici said that the EU will ensure that there is equal access to the vaccine. He says that the EU has provided a grant 267 billion shillings to IGAD member states for COVID-19 response. He said that the EU is committed to supporting the COVID-19 fight.
The EU in collaboration with IGAD and the United Nations donated ambulances and essential supplies worth 1.87 Million Euros to the Ministry of Health to mitigate the health and socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Personal Protective Equipment-PPEs and COVID-19 test kits will be destined for the border points of Malaba, Busia, Elegu as well as the Adjumani refugee camp and a mobile lab that will serve the refugee camps also due to be delivered.
The Minister of Health Jane Ruth Aceng asked Ugandans to remain patient as they await for delivery of the Covid-19 vaccine. says that the biggest challenge is the queue of the vaccine. She said that new equipment will help in case of a second wave or other variants of COVID-19 which will depend on the immunity of Ugandans.