WE note with concern reports that a fourth wave of the COVID-19 pandemic driven by variants is imminent in Zimbabwe. While we are fully aware of the measures put in place to curb the spread of COVID-19, in particular travel-related containment measures, we continue to seek an update regarding the tracking and tracing of COVID-19 variants. The update remains critical at this time as it supports response mechanism of communities to improve their level of adherence to COVID-19 containment measures.
We note the concerns of communities to the potential presence of variants which have been detected in South Africa and also the potential changes in the variants and mutations which were already circulating locally.
- We urge the Health and Child Care ministry to update us on the current mutations and variants identified in Zimbabwe.
On another note, we continue to raise concern regarding the inequity in the recognition of vaccine manufactured and administered in the global south. We continue to note that as the restrictions regarding travel and tourism around the world begin to loosen up, increasing restrictions are being placed on certain types of vaccines with travellers who would have taken such vaccines being required to satisfy certain conditions for entry into Europe, America, United Kingdom, among others. We condemn such discriminatory practices. We note, with grave concern, that the requirement that travellers should have been vaccinated with either Moderna, Oxford/AstraZeneca, Pfizer/BioNTech or the single dose Janssen vaccine is undermining vaccination efforts of countries in the global south. We strongly object to the inequity in the recognition of vaccines that have been approved by WHO and are part of the vaccine mix of countries in the global south and are manufactured by China or Russia.
- We call for full recognition of WHO approved vaccines globally.
- We call for countries in the global north to take practical steps to demonstrate their support for vaccine equity by addressing the exclusion of vaccines manufactured and administered in the global south. –Women’s Coalition