India’s Economic Times said on the 16th that South Africa suspended vaccination due to the effectiveness of the coronavirus vaccine and demanded the return of 1 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccine produced by the Indian Serum Research Institute, which caused great concern.
Although Reuters quoted Amban Pillay, deputy director-general of the South African Ministry of Health, as saying that the Economic Times’s statement is not true, it is worth mentioning that South Africa’s Health Minister Zvili Mkhz recently revealed on Twitter that the country is currently cooperating with China and Russia for vaccines. .
On February 16, South Africa’s Health Minister Zweli Mkhize tweeted to clarify an article published in the Sunday Independent.
The content of the tweet and the attached statement of the South African Ministry of Health mainly criticized the above-mentioned media’s false reports on issues such as the discord between South African President Cyril Ramaphosa and his own health minister due to vaccine procurement. It is worth mentioning that the statement also revealed that South Africa is cooperating with China and Russia on the coronavirus vaccine.
“We will continue to engage with manufacturers of the [Russian] ‘satellite V’ vaccine, who have submitted registration documents to the South African Health Products Authority,” the statement read.
The statement continued, “[We] have also conducted extensive discussions with [China] China’s national pharmaceutical group and signed a non-disclosure agreement with them to obtain more information about their vaccines.” ↓
In addition, the statement said that South Africa’s vaccine selection strategy is mainly guided by “scientific results and recommendations, and once these recommendations are made, the subject matter of procurement will be negotiated around price, availability, delivery time, storage and transportation requirements.”
Shortly after the tweet, the Economic Times of India reported on the same day that South Africa had asked vaccine manufacturer the Indian Serum Institute to withdraw 1 million doses of the coronavirus vaccine jointly developed by the company in early February by Oxford University and AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals, citing the vaccine’s local mutation in South Africa. The virus protection is not effective.
However, according to the latest news, Anban Pillay, deputy director-general of the South African Ministry of Health, has just told Reuters that the Economic Times of India’s claim that South Africa’s request for the Indian Serum Institute to withdraw 1 million doses of coronavirus vaccine is not true.
He also said South Africa plans to share 1 million doses of AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine received from the Indian Serum Institute with other African countries through the African Union (AU).
The Indian Serum Institute is one of the world’s largest vaccine manufacturers, and it is producing a coronavirus vaccine for AstraZeneca.
Earlier this month, the Indian Serum Institute provided 1 million doses of AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine to South Africa, and plans to continue to provide 500,000 doses in the next few weeks.
However, according to South African media reports, after testing, the AstraZeneca vaccine is not very effective against the novel coronavirus variant found in South Africa.
On the 7th, the South African government suspended the vaccination program of the vaccine.