Fighting COVID is ANC’s top priority for 2021, says Ramaphosa

Cyril Ramaphosa said a mass vaccination programme would be implemented as soon as South Africa received its first batch of a vaccine.

FILE: A screengrab of ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa was virtually delivering the party’s January 8 Statement.

JOHANNESBURG – African National Congress (ANC) President Cyril Ramaphosa on Friday said fighting COVID-19 was the party's top priority for 2021.

During a virtual address to mark the organisation's 109th anniversary, Ramaphosa stressed that the pandemic was a threat to the well-being of the country and livelihoods.

The ANC had to scrap its celebration plans due to the epidemic.

Ramaphosa said a mass vaccination programme would be implemented as soon as South Africa received its first batch of a vaccine.

“This programme will initially prioritise health workers and other frontline personnel such as teachers and policemen and women, the elderly and people with comorbidities. We will progressively reach all South Africans through a mass vaccination campaign to achieve herd immunity and prevent ongoing transmission.”

Without mentioning any names, he also warned against misinformation around vaccines.

This week, the ANC’s Gauteng secretary Jacob Khawe cautioned against the use of Western vaccines, saying he preferred ones from the continent or BRICS countries.

Ramaphosa said there was a need to act against this.

“We need to actively counter the spread of disinformation relating to COVID-19 and unfounded conspiracy theories about the virus, its treatment and the development of vaccines.”

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