Ramaphosa: Vaccine rollout gathering pace as SA jabs over 1 million people

The mass vaccination programme is expected to reach more than 40 million people to achieve population immunity.

FILE: President Cyril Ramaphosa. Picture: GCIS

CAPE TOWN - President Cyril Ramaphosa on Wednesday said the national vaccine rollout was now gathering pace and momentum, with more than 1 million people already vaccinated.

The mass vaccination programme is expected to reach more than 40 million people to achieve population immunity.

Ramaphosa said it was a massive logistical undertaking.

He was speaking at the start of a debate on the Presidency’s budget in the National Assembly on Wednesday.

Ramaphosa has welcomed the news that the World Health Organisation has now approved China’s Sinovac vaccine for emergency use.

“This is a crucial step that should allow our own health products regulatory authority, SAHPRA, to expeditiously consider the application from Sinovac.”

Ramaphosa said the government continued to negotiate with vaccine manufacturers to ensure a diverse and reliable supply of doses as the vaccination programme ramped up.

South Africa is at the forefront of efforts to ensure equality in the distribution of vaccines globally and plans for their manufacture at home and elsewhere in Africa.

“Manufacturing our own vaccines will enable us to overcome the current pandemic and respond to future health emergencies.”

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