Tanzania receives over 1 million doses of Covid-19 vaccine from the US

Sunday July 25 2021
vaccine pic

From left; Health minister Dr Dorothy Gwajima, Foreign affairs minister Ambassador Liberata Mulamula and US ambassador to Tanzania, Donald Wright. PHOTO | COURTESY

By Bethsheba Wambura

Dar es Salaam. Tanzania has today July 24, 2021, received over 1 million doses of the Janssen coronavirus vaccine from the United States donated through the World Health Organization's Covax initiative.

The vaccines were received by Tanzania’s Health Minister Dr Dorothy Gwajima and Foreign affairs minister Ambassador Liberata Mulamula at Julius Nyerere International Airport in Dar es Salaam, also present was the US ambassador to Tanzania, Donald Wright.

Through their Twitter account, the US embassy wrote: “The US is pleased to announce delivery to Tanzania of over 1 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine delivered through Covax in coordination with the African Union.  Another example of the strength of our 60-year partnership and our commitment to Tanzania.”

After handing over the vaccine cargo to the Tanzanian government, Mr Wright said the aim of the aid is to save the lives of Tanzanians.

"We offer this vaccine to save lives and lead the world in ending this scourge. Providing this vaccine is also another example of strengthening our 60-year partnership and our commitment to Tanzania, “he said.

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While speaking to journalists on Friday, July 23, 2021, Health Minister, Dr Dorothy Gwajima, said the government plans to vaccinate 60 percent of all Tanzanians.

She said when the vaccination rollout starts, priority will be given to frontline workers, the elderly, and those with underlying health issues.

“We will announce health centers where the vaccines will be available and the procedures that will be used to provide the vaccine,” she informed, adding; "the government is committed to ensuring that every Tanzanian gets the vaccine for free.”

The vaccines will be stored at the Medical Store Department (MSD) in Dar es Salaam until the immunization campaign begins.

A total of 11 million Tanzanians equivalent to 20 percent of the total population in the country will be targeted for vaccination through the Covax program.