AVMI Executive Director Dr. Patrick Tippoo says they are unaware of any initiative by Uganda towards manufacturing and added that only four countries that have not yet started actual manufacturing have been recognized adding that for any country hoping to start production, it not only requires a lot of money but determination and patience.
Only six African
countries are recognized as active vaccine manufacturers. This is according to
the African Vaccine Manufacturing Initiative (AVMI), an entity created to
ensure that African countries can manufacture their vaccines.
Speaking to journalists during a cross-border media café, AVMI Executive
Director Dr. Patrick Tippoo said Morocco, South Africa, Egypt, Senegal, Ghana,
and Nigeria are the countries on the continent that have either started actual
manufacturing or have tangible plans to start manufacturing.
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vaccine production”. //
This revelation comes just after the government gave an update early this month
that the country has made reasonable strides towards having its vaccine and
that had finished conducting animal trials preparing for human trials.
The Minister for Science, Technology, and Innovation Dr. Monica Musenero said
that Uganda is testing four vaccine candidates of which two have reached the
fifth and seventh stage of the 10 stage criteria they set up initially to
analyze the candidates before progressing into human trials.
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the vaccine”. //
While they have finished animal studies for the vaccine on the seventh stage,
Musenero says the fifth stage candidate should have been on the same stage but
were delayed as they looked for chemicals abroad which they have to only ship
in since there are restrictions on airlifting them.
says they are unaware of any initiative by Uganda towards manufacturing and
added that only four countries that have not yet started actual manufacturing
have been recognized adding that for any country hoping to start production, it
not only requires a lot of money but determination and patience.
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to be acknowledged”. //
with the advent of COVID-19, many countries have expressed interest in starting
manufacturing considering the tight competition that is involved with acquiring
Tippoo says they are not only concerned with COVID-19 vaccines but also the
routine childhood vaccines where many African countries are still relying on
GAVI, the Vaccine Alliance for supplies.
In fact, he says only ten African countries that buy their vaccines and the
rest rely on donations.
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For now, health advocate Asia Russell who leads Health Gap, an NGO that is
currently advocating for Global COVID-19 vaccine and treatment access says
countries in Africa should push to start manufacturing considering the politics
involved where wealthy countries are hoarding jabs and pharmaceutical companies
are hoarding knowledge.
She says currently especially for COVID-19, all powers have been handed to
manufacturers a reason they are selling booster doses to countries that have
reached 70% vaccination coverage at the expense of countries in Africa that are
struggling to reach 5% of their target population.
Russell encourages countries to support the TRIPS waiver proposal to address
the prevention, containment, and treatment of Covid-19.