Zimbabwe opens vaccination against COVID-19 to everyone

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Locals queue to register details for COVID-19 vaccination exercise at Wilkins Hospital in Harare, capital of Zimbabwe, March 24, 2021. (Xinhua/Shaun Jusa)
Locals queue to register details for COVID-19 vaccination exercise at Wilkins Hospital in Harare, capital of Zimbabwe, March 24, 2021. (Xinhua/Shaun Jusa)

Zimbabwe’s Information Minister Monica Mutsvangwa announced Tuesday that the mass vaccination campaign against COVID-19 which began in February prioritizing high-risk groups is now open to every eligible member of the public.

She said frontline workers, however, will continue to be prioritized at vaccination centers.

“The nation is informed that vaccination is now open to everybody, with frontline personnel still being prioritized at vaccination centers,” she said.

She added that as more people throng vaccination centers, the government has engaged extra personnel from the security and defense forces in order to expedite the vaccination of people.

She said massive vaccination will also be extended to rural areas which are hotspots.

Mutsvangwa said following delays in grain delivery to state grain procure, the Grain Marketing Board owing to demands for vaccination certificates, the government has directed that this requirement be suspended even though farmers will still be required to observe all stipulated COVID-19 regulations.

A third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic is sweeping through Zimbabwe, which has seen cases and deaths spiking exponentially in recent weeks.

As of Monday, Zimbabwe had recorded a cumulative total of 70,426 COVID-19 cases, 46,932 recoveries and 2,236 deaths.

A total of 926,312 people have received their first COVID-19 jab while 605,556 have received their second jab.

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