Botswana reports 25 Omicron variant cases

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Botswana's Health Minister Edwin Dikoloti briefs reporters on the progress of COVID-19 vaccination and the new variant in Gaborone, Botswana's capital city, Dec. 8, 2021. At least 25 cases of the Omicron variant have been discovered in Botswana, a health official said Wednesday. (Photo by Tshekiso Tebalo/Xinhua)
Botswana’s Health Minister Edwin Dikoloti briefs reporters on the progress of COVID-19 vaccination and the new variant in Gaborone, Botswana’s capital city, on December 8, 2021. At least 25 cases of the Omicron variant have been discovered in Botswana, a health official said Wednesday. (Photo by Tshekiso Tebalo/Xinhua)

At least 25 cases of the Omicron variant have been discovered in Botswana, a health official said Wednesday.

The scientists have discovered that the new variant is highly mutative and more transmissible, Health Minister Edwin Dikoloti briefed reporters in Gaborone, Botswana’s capital city, on the progress of COVID-19 vaccination.

“What we don’t know is whether the new variant is more lethal or not, and how effective current vaccines are against it,” Dikoloti added.

According to the minister, 1,094,388 people or 78.7 percent of the targeted Botswana citizens and residents aged over 18 had received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine as of Monday, while 982,275 people or 70.6 percent had been fully vaccinated.

“Botswana did not only surpass its own target of 64 percent of the targeted population by end of 2021 but also exceeded the target set by the World Health Organization for countries to have vaccinated 40 percent of their eligible population by the end of this month,” said Dikoloti.

With a population of 2.35 million, Botswana has so far registered 195,552 COVID-19 confirmed cases and 2,420 deaths.

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