President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has appealed to all Ghanaians who are yet to get vaccinated not to be afraid to do so when jabs become available.
He said in his address to the nation on Sunday July 25, that there was no need for hesitancy because all vaccines to be used in the country have been certified as safe-for-use by the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA).
“There should, therefore, be no hesitancy amongst the population who are yet to be vaccinated. As the oft-cited saying goes, it is better to be safe than sorry.”
Akufo-Addo further revealed that the government is procuring some 18,478,670 vaccines through the COVAX facility, African Medicine Supply Platform and other bodies to aid in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic.
He noted that these vaccines will arrive in the country in the third quarter of the year.
The United States of America through the COVAX facility is providing 1,000,000 Pfizer vaccines, the African Union is providing 229,670 Pfizer vaccines while the United Kingdom is giving out 249,000 AstraZeneca vaccines, he said.
“Government is also in the process of procuring seventeen million (17 million) single dose per person Johnson & Johnson vaccines, through the African Medicine Supply Platform, in this quarter,” he added.
The global shortage of vaccines means that we must develop our capacity to produce our own vaccines domestically, and reduce our dependence on foreign supplies. We must be self-sufficient in this regard in the future, and prepare ourselves better to deal with any such occurrences in the future.
To this end, the Committee I established, under the leadership of the world-renowned Ghanaian scientist, Professor Kwabena Frimpong Boateng, to investigate Ghana’s potential as a vaccine manufacturing hub, to meet national and regional needs, has presented its preliminary report which, amongst others, recommends the establishment of a National
Vaccine Institute to spearhead this development. Government has committed to inject seed funding of some twenty-five million United States dollars (US$25 million) this year into this whole enterprise.
The Institute will be charged with delivering six clear mandates.
These are establishing local vaccine manufacturing plants; deepening Research & Development (R&D) for vaccines in Ghana; upgrading and strengthening the FDA; forging bilateral and multilateral partnerships for vaccine manufacturing in various areas, such as funding, clinical trials, technology transfer, licensing, and assignment of intellectual property rights; building the human resource base for vaccine discovery, development, and manufacture; and establishing a permanent national secretariat to coordinate vaccine development and manufacture.