The World Health Organization (WHO) says the global commitment to provide Covid vaccines to Africa needs to translate to “real delivery” of the vaccines to the continent.
“We have seen the pledges they have done in the past… it t’s all good but what we really need in the vaccines in the arms of the people on the ground,” Dr Richard Mihigo, the WHO Africa regional director told the BBC Newsday programme.
He said only 55 million had been fully immunised against the virus, “representing only 2.6% of the population in sub-Saharan Africa”.
Dr Mihigo says Africa has done well to distribute the few vaccines it has so far received, despite some of them arriving with a short time to their expiry date.
The WHO official says the global Covax vaccine scheme, which is intended to help poorer countries, had done well despite being unable to access enough vaccine supplies.
The Covax scheme has supplied about 37% of the 177 million vaccine doses supplied to Africa, with the rest acquired through bilateral deals and donations from a variety of sources.
Dr Mihigo urged countries to support the scheme by channelling their donations through Covax.