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Africa vaccine production long term project, says CDC

Director, Africa Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), John Nkengasong, on Thursday, february 10, 2022, said Africa’s vaccine production would be a long term project.

Dr. John Nkengasong
Africa CDC Director, Dr. John Nkengasong

Nkengasong, said efforts to build up capacity to manufacture vaccines against COVID-19 are not designed to meet this year’s needs but are for the longer term.

“The efforts that are going on in the continent now are part of the African Partnership for Vaccine Manufacturing.

“There are about 10 countries that are engaged now in the process of vaccine manufacturing or planning to do so,” he said.

He said the leading countries involved were South Africa, Senegal, Rwanda, Algeria and Morocco.

“However that is not designed to meet the needs for this year, for sure. It is designed with the understanding that we have to find a long-term solution for vaccination in Africa.

“It is also designed with the understanding that we may be immunising ourselves almost every six months on the continent with this virus.”

Nkengasong, added that Africa’s top public health agency was still talking to pharmaceutical firms Merck and Pfizer, about obtaining supplies of their antiviral pills to treat COVID-19.

“We are still in discussions with both Pfizer and Merck, so there is no new development that I can share. These discussions take long,” Nkengasong said.

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