No country must be left behind in accessing Covid-19 vaccine: Ramaphosa
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Durban - The world must unite to ensure that no person, no country and no region must be left behind in getting access to Covid-19 vaccines, President Cyril Ramaphosa told a global audience on Tuesday.
Addressing the the launch of the 'Recover Better Together' post Covid-19 Campaign organized by Global Citizen under the patronage of EU Commission President Ursula Von Der Leyen, Ramaphosa said South Africa was honoured to lend its support to Global Citizen, and to this Recover Better Together campaign.
For the past 10 years, Global Citizen has been a leading voice for the involvement of governments, world leaders, philanthropists, activists, artists and the citizens of the world in ending extreme poverty.
Ramaphosa said when the coronavirus pandemic struck last year, Global Citizen responded swiftly, hosting the ‘One World: Together At Home’ benefit concert in support of healthcare workers on the frontline.
“The substantial pledges made for coronavirus relief at this event enabled NGOs around the world to help those most vulnerable,” he said.
“The campaign we are launching today recognises that overcoming the Covid-19 pandemic is essential if we are to make any progress in tackling poverty. To achieve this, we must deepen cooperation to ensure equitable access to vaccines. No person, no country and no region must be left behind. To fight the pandemic, we need to pool resources, capabilities, knowledge and intellectual property,” Ramphosa said.
He called on world leaders to support the COVAX facility to ensure rapid and equitable access to Covid-19 vaccines for all countries and applauded French President Emmanuel Macron and EU’s call that wealthier countries should donate 5% of their purchased vaccine stock to developing countries.
Ramaphosa said another important step is to enable the transfer of medical technology for the duration of the pandemic.
This, he pointed out would allow the increase of the production of Covid-19 vaccines and other medical products, lower prices and improve distribution to reach all corners of the world .
“Alongside these efforts to overcome the pandemic, we must work together to end hunger, promote education and the resumption of learning, and protect the planet. By doing so, we will be contributing to a fair, just and inclusive recovery. The world will recover, it will recover better, and it will recover together. For the benefit of all leaving no one behind,” Ramaphosa said.