- President Cyril Ramapohsa and his Deputy David Mabuza received the first million doses of the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine in person
- The vaccine will be the most powerful tool in South Africa's arsenal in the fight against Covid-19
- South Africa is divided over the vaccine with some people suspicious over the intentions of the pharmaceutical companies
President Cyril Ramaphosa received the first million doses of the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine as it arrived in South Africa from India.
Both Ramaphosa and Deputy President David Mabuza were on hand to receive the vital medicine which will become the primary tool in the fight against Covid-19.
Ramaphosa was ecstatic that the vaccine had finally arrived according to SABC.
“The arrival of the first vaccines is excellent news and a step in the right direction for South Africa,” Professor Willem Hanekom, director of the Africa Health Research Institute, told The Associated Press.
This is a turning point in the fight against Covid-19 and according to ABC News, South African has the highest number of cases of Covid-19 on the African continent.
News24 reported that the vaccine doses will be stored and tested before mass rollout through Biovac and other distributors. Another 500 000 vaccine doses are expected to arrive later this month.
A report by EWN stated that Minister Mkhize spoke about 20 million vaccines being ordered from US company Pfizer. They have reportedly been secured and are awaiting delivery dates and precise amounts from manufacturers.
According to gov.za, the aim of rolling out the vaccine in South Africa is to achieve population immunity. Frontline healthcare workers will be the first in the country to receive the vaccination in its first phase.
Earlier, Briefly.co.za reported that it was recently announced that the first batch of Covid-19 vaccinations will land in South Africa on Monday, 1 February. According to reports, the vaccine, Covishield, will be personally received by President Cyril Ramaphosa.
The vaccine, which was produced and shipped by the Serum Institute of India, is called AstraZeneca and has caused quite a buzz on South African social media as many locals contemplate what should be a saving grace.
While a few expressed relief that the vaccine will be here soon, many others, however, expressed reluctance to take the vaccine. A lot of them remarked that government officials should try the vaccine before it is sent out to the public.