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South African deputy president confident of successful vaccination roll-out

South African Deputy President David Mabuza
FILE PHOTO: South African Deputy President David Mabuza at the South African parliament in Cape Town. (Photo credit RODGER BOSCH/AFP via Getty Images)

South Africa’s Health and Treasury departments have been negotiating with drug manufacturers to ensure that the country’s vaccination roll-out plan is successful, said Deputy President David Mabuza on Friday.

“The Inter-Ministerial Committee on Vaccines appointed by the President has been seized with providing leadership, and overseeing the roll-out of the vaccination program,” he said at a virtual South African National AIDS Council plenary session.

With over 51,000 deaths from COVID-19, South Africa has vaccinated over 138,000 medical workers as it awaited more vaccines to arrive.

He ensured that all citizens will have access to the vaccine across the country. “The vaccine roll-out plan has comprehensively mapped out all storage, distribution and vaccination sites that will ensure equitable access to vaccines by everyone irrespective of where they live,” he said.

While only medical workers are being vaccinated until now, Mabuza said all the groups would be targeted during different stages. “The phases of the plan provide clear categorization, and prioritization of various population groups to be targeted over the period of the vaccination process until the country achieves the desired population immunity,” he said.