South Africa sells its supply of one million AstraZeneca vaccines

astrazeneca sold south africa vaccines

Talk about cheap shots, hey? South Africa has sold its reserve of one million AstraZeneca vaccines on Sunday, marking yet another controversial moment in the country’s attempted rollout of COVID-19 jabs. Despite vaccinating fewer than 200 000 people in the last six weeks, Zweli Mkhize has confirmed that one million doses will now leave the country.

Why is South Africa selling its supply of vaccines?

This batch was delivered to South Africa early last month. But fears about AstraZeneca’s efficacy against the South African variant of COVID-19 effectively put the brakes on our mass inoculation programme. Further studies suggest that AZ still gives higher protection against the threat of hospitalisation and death – and the DA wanted the jabs to come back online.

However, the Health Department has made its final decision. A total of nine member states of the African Union (AU) – as yet to be identified – will gleefully receive the dormant doses instead. The ANC has been criticised to high heaven for their handling of the vaccine drive– and we doubt opposition parties will find anything positive to say about this.

Zweli Mkhize confirms AstraZeneca jabs ‘are being sold on’

In a statement published on Sunday evening, Zweli Mkhize confirmed that the full purchase amount has been received by the Health Department, and the jabs will soon be shipped overseas to their final destination.

“Zweli Mkhize is pleased to announce that the sale of the AstraZeneca vaccine that we had acquired has now been completed. The department has ensured that all member states identified by the AU vaccine team are compliant, and have obtained all regulatory permits.”

“The full purchase amount has been received by the department on Monday. The AU and South African teams have all logistical arrangements in place for their shipment. Nine member states will benefit from this.”

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