Malawi Government to Proceed with Oxford-AstraZeneca  Covid-19 Vaccine

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Pic: C Daniel Namwini-Mana

Malawi Government will proceed with acquiring the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine despite concerns about its effectiveness, Minister of Health Khumbize Chiponda and  Minister of Information Gospel Kazako announced yesterday.

“We are going ahead as planned,” said Chiponda on Monday evening.

Two weeks ago, President Lazarus Chakwera announced that Malawi has acquired 1.5 million doses which are expected to be in the country end of February or early March 2021.

Concerns were raised following the recent revelations on the effectiveness of the vaccine on the South African variant of the Covid-19 currently blamed for the increased cases in Malawi.

However, Chiponda, who is also Presidential Task Force on Covid-19 co-chairperson, said Malawi will proceed with rolling out the vaccine while at the same time verifying whether the majority of the virus pandemic cases in the country are indeed caused by the South African variant of the disease.

“The most important thing is that we will reduce the symptoms and reduce suffering,” said Chiponda.

Minister of Information Gospel Kazako has pleaded for patience on the matter. He said experts on vaccination will be instrumental in making the final decision on the matter but said there were no reasons to worry about the vaccine.