- During the 2021 State of the Nation Address (SONA), President Cyril Ramaphosa spoke about the Covid-19 vaccine rollout
- South Africa's vaccine rollout will not be delayed due to the AstraZeneca vaccine's low efficacy
- The country has secured nine million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, among others
President Cyril Ramaphosa delivered the 2021 State of the Nation Address (SONA) on the evening of Thursday 11 February. Ramaphosa spoke about the coronavirus pandemic and the vaccine rollout in the country.
The president stated that the AstraZeneca vaccine's low efficacy will not delay the vaccine rollout in the country, which is set to start in March. Ramaphosa added that the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which is more effective against the 501Y.V2 variant, will be used.
The country has secured 9 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine with the first batch of 80 000 doses expected to arrive in the country next week.
Pfizer has also committed 20 million vaccines and the country has secured 12 million vaccine doses from the global COVAX facility:
"Pfizer has committed 20 million vaccine doses commencing with deliveries at the end of the first quarter. We are continuing our engagements with all the vaccine manufacturers to ensure that we secure sufficient quantities of vaccines that are suitable to our conditions. #SONA2021
"In addition, we have secured 12 million vaccine doses from the global COVAX facility."
Ramaphosa confirmed that all provinces have a vaccine rollout plan.
Briefly.co.za earlier reported that President Ramaphosa has put the economy in the spotlight. President Ramaphosa has noted the immense economic strain that the Covid-19 pandemic has placed on South Africa.
Ramaphosa says that there was no way of knowing exactly how both the virus and the subsequent lockdown would affect the nation:
"When I delivered the State of the Nation Address in this House last year, none of us could have imagined how – within a matter of weeks – our country and our world would have changed so dramatically."
With poverty on the rise, Ramaphosa noted that inequality in South Africa is deepening:
"There were 1.7 million fewer people employed in the third quarter of 2020 than there were in the first quarter, before the pandemic struck. Our unemployment rate now stands at a staggering 30.8%."
Enjoyed reading our story? Download BRIEFLY's news app on Google Play now and stay up-to-date with major South African news!