Director of the West African Center for Cell Biology of Infectious Pathogens (WACCBIP), Professor Gordon Akanzuwine Awandare has told President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to be measured in his target of vaccinating twenty million people in Ghana by the close of the year.
He said this target is unrealistic because Ghana does not have full control over the production and supply of vaccines.
His comments come President Akufo-Addo said during his address at the 76th Session of the UN General Assembly on Wednesday September 22 that Ghana is working to reach the target of inoculating twenty million people by the end of 2021.
Ghana, President Akufo-Addo added, has so far received five million doses, which have been administered to frontline health workers and those classified as being most at risk.
“Five million is not a figure to be sneered at, particularly when we consider the situation in many other African countries. We are grateful that our efforts at the management of the pandemic and vaccine distribution have been recognised, and we have received these amounts so far. We are still hoping to vaccinate twenty million of our people by the end of the year,” he said.
President Akufo-Addo continued, “Ghana agrees with the call of the Rome Declaration of Global Health for voluntary licensing and technology transfers to boost vaccine production. The Africa Union is working with WHO, WTO and other global partners to expand its vaccine manufacturing and deployment.”
But Prof Awandare told Joy FM that the President is just giving his team a high target.
“He needs to give his team high target to meet, I think that is what he is doing. The reality may not bear out that way because we don’t have control over the supply of the vaccines. That is the problem we have had since we launched our vaccination campaign early in the year, In February or March.
“You will recall that at the timer, I raised the same issues about the time we gave and the risk of raising expectations and then get to a point where vaccine supplies don’t come through as planned and we had to explain to the people.”