BY MAVIS N PODOKOLO
INDIA’s High Commissioner to the Solomon Islands handed over 50,000 AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccines to the Ministry of Health and Medical Services yesterday.
The vaccine was received by the Minister Dr Culwick Togamana at the Honiara International Airport.
Dr Togamana said although vaccination started in 2021, the program was met by geographical challenges.
“Most of our people are yet to receive their vaccines.
“And so, these lifesaving AstraZeneca vaccines will assist the government to vaccinate the number of our people who are yet to receive their vaccines.
“On this note, I also convey to you our sincere gratitude for the first donation of 24 thousand AstraZeneca that we have received through the COVAX facility.
“Knowing the challenges that your people have gone through, but you have the heart of humanity to assist us,” he said.
Togamana stressed that Solomon Islands had faced vaccination hesitancy, but his team has worked hard and are hoping to achieve 70 percent of vaccination coverage by the end of this year.
India High Commissioner to Solomon Islands Inbasekar Sundaramurthi the coviShield presented is actually the AstraZeneca vaccines produced in India.
“It is the first time India will bring in covid-19 vaccines to the Solomon Islands. These vaccines are going to come into the country by Wednesday or Thursday, the vaccine will come by flight.
“Australia and all the bigger countries have done their major part.
“India as a development partner, it is now our duty to do our part that is why we will bring in the 50 thousand Covid-19 vaccines,” Sundaramurthi said