Staff Writer

WHILE Namibia’s hope against Covid-19 lies in vaccinating at least 60-80 percent of the population to reach herd immunity, the country has not vaccinated more than five percent.

Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah, says. She received Covid-19 vaccines donated by the Netherlands on Wednesday.

Appreciating the 75 000 Astrazeneca doses donation as coming at a crucial time with the country then having run out of the vaccine leaving some people not having received their second doses. The Minister thanked the Netherlands for the donation: “All countries in the world are affected by Covid-19 and when one is willing to share with others at this critical time, that is indeed a friend who is responding to a friend in need.”

The Namibian veteran diplomat and politician says the donated vaccines have already been distributed to the regions where the people were anxiously waiting for them.
“The vaccines are our most important weapon against the sickness and will take us one step closer to ending the pandemic everywhere.”

Nandi-Ndaitwah says the virus was spreading fast, producing new variants with great social and economic impact, reaching the remotest parts of the world, confirming it to be a global disaster.

“To fight this global disaster needs unity at national, regional and international levels like what we are experiencing today,” she says adding that she has explained Namibia’s dire situation as a result of the pandemic, the delta variant, the scarcity of vaccines and medical equipment.

“I thank the Government of the Netherlands for heeding our call and the Dutch civil society as well as Naankuse foundation for having raised awareness on our situation. We have also seen projects initiated by the Netherlands to support Namibia’s green economy. In addition, projects in the areas of science, technology, innovation and education are part of our cooperation basket.”

The Minister reiterated that successful vaccination campaigns do not require efforts by governments alone, but joint efforts by individuals, local and regional councils, traditional and religious leader as well as the business community are necessary if we are to reach the required herd immunity.

She also thanked the Minister of Health and Social Services (MoHSS) Dr Kalumbi Shangula, and all health care workers for their sterling effort in the fight against Covid.

Attending the occasion was Minister of Information and Communication Technology (MICT), Dr Peya Mushelenga, Deputy Minister of International Relations, Hon Jennely Matundu, MoHSS Deputy Minister, Dr Ester Muinjangue, Johannes Peters ambassador of the Netherlands to Namibia, Radoslaw Rokita, Charge de Affaires of the European Delegation and senior Government officials.