- President Akufo-Addo says Ghana is struggling with its COVID-19 vaccination programme
- He blamed the development on the difficulty in accessing the vaccines
- The president’s disclosure is coming in the wake of the Sputnik V scandal
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President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo says Ghana is facing challenges with its vaccination programme.
This, according to the president, is because of the difficulty in getting access to COVID-19 vaccines.
The president on Monday, March 1, 2021, became the first person to be vaccinated after Ghana took delivery of some 600,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Ghana on February 22 took delivery of the AstraZeneca vaccine as part of the UN-led COVAX facility.
He took the jab for the COVID-19 vaccine at the 37 Military Hospital with his wife Rebecca.
Speaking at an SDG forum at the Jubilee House, President Akufo-Addo said: “We have obvious difficulties as far as the vaccination programme is concerned.”
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He said in an article filed by citinewsroom.com.gh that Ghana is part of the victims of “this worldwide shortage” of vaccines that poor and less advantaged nations are experiencing by not having access to the vaccines.
Controversy over buying vaccines
The president’s disclosure comes amid reports that Ghana was cited by Norwegian news portals in an investigative report for buying the Sputnik V vaccines from the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF).
According to the report, it was bought through some businessmen at an overpriced unit cost which was almost double the original price.
The vaccines were purchased at $19 instead of the original buying price of $10.
The ministry of health in a statement explained that the vaccines were bought at that price for some peculiar reasons.
The Chief Director of the Ministry, Kwabena Boadu Oku-Afari in the statement said the several efforts to get the vaccines from the Russian government proved futile and they had to resort to using middlemen.
“The Government of Ghana was unable to obtain direct supplies from the Russian Government as stated earlier, hence the resort to the market," the statement noted.
The statement further noted that the government had to rather respond to an offer from the private office of one Sheikh Ahmed Dalmook Al Maktoum of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for the supply of 3.4 million doses at a unit cost of $19.
“It should be noted that the US$10 price per dose, which is being proposed as the correct price, is the ex-factory price, which is only obtained from Government to Government arrangements,” the statement noted
It explained that the initial price of $25 had to be negotiated downwards to $19 through efforts of the government.
New coronavirus case in Parliament
New measures are therefore expected to be rolled out to stop the virus from getting out of control in the lawmaking chamber.
In a report sighted on Myjoyonline.com, Muntaka Mubarak, a member of Parliament’s Health Committee said the leadership of the House is trying to find out the number of MPs yet to take the second jab of the COVID-19 vaccine.
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