File picture: Reuters/Nyimas Laula
File picture: Reuters/Nyimas Laula

Phase 2 of vaccination drive to start in May – Ramaphosa

By Rudolph Nkgadima Time of article published Mar 30, 2021

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CAPE TOWN - President Cyril Ramaphosa says phase 2 of the vaccination drive – aimed at people over 60 and with co-morbidities – will start in May.

The president was addressing the nation on Tuesday evening and provided an update on the national vaccination programme, which he says will start gaining momentum.

Ramaphosa said the first phase of the vaccination programme, targeting healthcare workers, would be completed within three months.

"We have secured 11 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which we know to be effective against the dominant variants in our country. We have secured a further 20 million doses and are finalising the agreement with Johnson & Johnson,” said Ramaphosa.

"We are also in various stages of negotiations with the manufacturers of other vaccines such as Sinovac, Sinopharm and Sputnik V. Some of these manufacturers are in the final stages of the approval process for use of the vaccines in SA,” he said.

Ramaphosa said the demand for vaccines around the world had become extremely competitive, but the government is doing its best to secure enough supply for the people of South Africa and the African continent.

"An Electronic Vaccination Data System has been established to manage the vaccine rollout and direct people towards vaccination sites closest to where they live.

’’Registration to be vaccinated is scheduled to start in April. People will be encouraged to register online, but those without online access will be able to register in person," Ramaphosa said.

The president thanked the private healthcare sector, private enterprises working through the Solidarity Fund and the Vodacom Group for support with the vaccine drive.

“We commend the Vodacom Group and Vodafone Foundation, which have pledged R87 million in the African countries in which they operate for cold chain storage and logistics so that Covid-19 vaccines are delivered securely,” he said.

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