President Mnangagwa yesterday urged citizens to take up the Covid-19 vaccine, which he described as the best way out of restrictions that have seen people across the world being confined to their homes to avoid the spread of the pandemic.
Zimbabwe became one of the first countries to roll out vaccines, a development that saw the Government getting a pat on the back from the World Health Organisation (WHO) for its handling of the pandemic.
President Mnangagwa, who has been leading the fight against Covid-19 from the front, yesterday took it upon himself to urge the citizenry to take up vaccination.
His call comes amid unsubstantiated conspiracies, with some questioning the safety and efficacy of vaccines.
“Since 2020, Zimbabwe like the rest of the world has been fighting Covid-19,” wrote President Mnangagwa on his Twitter handle.
“We have lost many of our loved ones, those who have survived are still coming to terms with the trauma. Our way of life has changed as we adjust to the new normal.”
The President acknowledged some of the questions being asked by some citizens such as if there was a way out of the pandemic and if there was protection against Covid-19?
In response to the questions, President Mnangagwa said: “Well, I am here to tell you that you and I have a role to play in this fight. Covid-19 vaccines have been delivered to Zimbabwe.
“These vaccines help minimise the risk of infection and are being administered all over Zimbabwe free of charge. You and I need to defeat the disease.
“So, get vaccinated now. This is our stand against Covid-19. Together, we will conquer. Get vaccinated now!”
The President’s call immediately got endorsement from WHO, which reiterated the need to follow scientifically-proven interventions in the fight against the global pandemic.
WHO also reiterated its commitment to continue partnering and collaborating with Government, but warned Zimbabweans against lowering the guard against mitigatory initiatives particularly at a time the country appears to be winning the fight against Covid-19.
“We continue to support the Government of Zimbabwe’s efforts to continuously offer timely and relevant information to communities on Covid-19,” said WHO country representative Dr Alex Gasasira.
“People should continue being reminded of the importance of wearing of masks, washing of hands, maintaining physical distancing, avoiding crowded places where possible and other measures the health experts have been preaching.
“Covid-19 is still with us and every individual should do all they can to ensure the spread of this disease is minimised,” said Dr Gasasira.
Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister, Monica Mutsvangwa, last week implored citizens to remain vigilant in the fight against Covid-19.
WHO is presently supporting the Government on the ongoing sensitisation efforts in communities and is telling community leaders about Covid-19 in general as well as the importance of vaccination.
Zimbabwe received 200 000 doses of the Sinopharm vaccine from China recently and the Asian country has pledged to donate a further 200 000 vaccines, which should be delivered soon.
India has also donated 75 000 vaccines and modalities for delivery are being worked out.
On its part, Zimbabwe is buying more vaccines and US$100 million has been set aside for the exercise.