By Nyasha Mutena
The COVID-19 Vaccine distribution and training of vaccinators is underway across the country. Also, target groups began to be inoculated on 22 February 2021 across all the provinces. Measures have been put in place to guarantee a steady flow of vaccine doses, and to ensure that targeted groups receive their doses at the appropriate time.
This was revealed by Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Senator Monica Mutsvangwa during the post cabinet briefing yesterday, 23 February. Senator Mutsvangwa was relaying Vice President Chiwenga as Minister of Health and Child Care’s progress report on the procurement and roll-out of the COVID-19 vaccines.
Briefing journalists, Senator Mutsvangwa said;
“Cabinet was informed that. The Republics of India and the Russian Federation have donated COVID-19 vaccines to the tune of 75 000 and 12 000 doses to Zimbabwe, respectively. The vaccines come on the backdrop of another 200 000 doses donated by the People’s Republic of China,” She said.
She emphasized that government put together resources sufficient to procure COVID-19 vaccines to cover the herd immunity of 10 million people (60%).
Meanwhile, the request by the Ministry of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services to include journalists in Phase One of the inoculation was approved because journalism is listed as an essential service in SI 93 of 2020. The media plays a crucial role in providing information that saves lives. Similarly, the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development requested the Minister of Health and Child Care to designate the Roads Sector as an Essential Service under the lockdown regulations.
“The main reasons for the request include, but are not limited to the following:
roads create an enabling environment in any economy as they bridge the conveyance gap between supply and demand; the importance of roads is further amplified in responses to disaster situations; and the current above-normal rains have brought severe damage to the national road network leaving communities cut off from assessing essential services,” said Senator Mutsvangwa.
The President has since declared roads in towns and cities dysfunctional, as such, government commits to take over roads in urban areas for repairs.