Kampala, July 3: Ugandan authorities said that if they could immunise more than 21 million people, or nearly half the population, COVID-19 would be put at bay.
But procuring vaccines remains uncertain as one of the main manufacturers India is battling the raging virus at home and prioritizing domestic use, the Xinhua news agency reported. Rahul Gandhi Targets Govt Once Again Over COVID-19 Vaccination Policy, Says ‘Where Are Vaccines?’
Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has previously said that although the country has received doses of the COVID-19 vaccines through donations, it is now considering purchasing the vaccines or even producing them locally if it could secure the necessary raw materials.
In a televised update about the pandemic on Friday, Minister of Health Ruth Aceng said that the government would procure an additional 11 million doses, among which 9 million are AstraZeneca and 2 million Johnson and Johnson.
"The ministry of health has concluded the initial legal requirements to procure 2 million of Johnson and Johnson vaccine through Africa Export-Import Bank and the African Union. The process is ongoing," said Aceng.
"Legal requirements to procure 9 million doses of vaccines through the COVAX facility under the cost sharing framework have been concluded and funds have been remitted for this. So we wait for feedback on when we can receive the doses from the COVAX facility," she said.
COVAX is a global initiative to boost the equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines.
She said there are ongoing talks to acquire vaccines from Cuba, Russia, China and the UK in addition to COVAX.
The Ministry of Health recently announced that this month it will receive over 882,600 doses of AstraZeneca vaccine through COVAX. At least 300,000 doses of China's Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine are also expected to arrive this month.
The country last month received 175,200 AstraZeneca doses with support from the United Nations Children's Fund and the French Embassy under COVAX.
The country in March this year received 864,000 doses of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine via COVAX and 100,000 doses from the Indian government.
As of Friday, a total of 861,645 people had received the first jab of AstraZeneca vaccine and 129,259 had gotten their second jabs, according to the ministry of health.
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Jul 03, 2021 11:17 AM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).