In the wake of disagreements over the government’s procurement of Sputnik-V vaccines at a higher cost using intermediaries, the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo, has stated that the country is facing challenges with its vaccination programme due to the difficulty in getting access to COVID-19 vaccines.
He explained that the global politics on manufacturing, procurement and distribution is making the situation even more difficult.
Speaking at an SDG forum at the Jubilee House, President Akufo-Addo disclosed that the government has put together a team, led by former Environment, Science and Technology Minister, Professor Kwabena Frimpong Boateng, to work out modalities that will see to the production of vaccines in Ghana.
“We have obvious difficulties as far as the vaccination programme is concerned. Unfortunately, we are the victims of this worldwide shortage of vaccines that poor and less advantaged nations are experiencing by not having access to the vaccines.”
“So, that of course is a major challenge for us, the procurement logistics and the issues involved in it.”
A member of Ghana’s COVID-19 response team, Dr. Bernard Okoe Boye has said the government is exploring other feasible options to get vaccines for the country.
“What is happening to Ghana is a global issue. So what we are doing is that this government is engaging directly with other European countries who have stock of AstraZeneca and are not deploying them that much. So we will continue to explore”.
Dr. Okoe Boye, however, could not give timelines.
According to him, “it will be difficult to speak and state the specific date because, with this Africa platform that we are using and the direct Russia -Government engagement people are talking about, they tell us that it will take six or 12 months before the vaccines will come and remember in a year, a lot can happen.”