Africa's top university to bar unvaccinated from campus

Thursday October 21 2021
Covid PIC

A health-care worker administers the Covid-19 vaccine for the prevention of infection by the coronavirus. Photo | File

By AFP

The University of Cape Town will require all staff and students to be vaccinated against Covid-19 from January, its council said Wednesday.

Details of the plan are expected in December, making Africa's top-ranking university the first in the country to require proof of vaccination in order to access the campus.

South Africa launched electronic vaccination certificates this month and is debating whether to make inoculation mandatory for certain events.

Only fully jabbed football fans were allowed to attend the match between South Africa and Ghana last week, the first time spectators have attended a sporting event in the republic since the coronavirus pandemic struck early last year.

Cricket has also followed suit.

Two major companies -- financial services group Sanlam and medical aid provider Discovery -- have meanwhile asked all staff to be immunised by 2022.

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The University of Cape Town Council said it had asked the executive to "develop the operational details" for approval in December.

The decision was partly based on a survey of staff and students in which most respondents supported a mandatory vaccine policy, it said in a statement.

The country worst-hit by coronavirus in Africa was slow to start inoculating its population and is struggling with vaccine hesitancy.

Jabs were opened up to children aged 12 and older on Wednesday in a bid to limit Covid-19 outbreaks in schools.

South Africa aims to vaccinate 40 million people by February, and is about a quarter of the way toward that goal.