Daily US Times: Ghana has become the first country in the world to receive coronavirus vaccines through the Covax vaccine-sharing initiative.
The World Health Organization (WHO) programme aims to ensure that Covid-19 vaccines are shared fairly among all nations.
Covax is aiming to deliver about two billion doses of coronavirus vaccines globally by the end of the year.
Many rich countries, who began their own vaccinations months ago, have faced criticism for ordering or buying more vaccines than they need.
A total of 600,000 doses of the Covid-19 vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University arrived in Ghana’s capital Accra on Wednesday.
The WHO and the United Nations children’s fund (Unicef) said said in a joint statement that it was a “momentous occasion”.
The statement added: “The arrival of the Covid-19 vaccines into Ghana is critical in bringing the pandemic to an end.”
Ghana has recorded more than 80,700 cases of coronavirus and 580 deaths since the coronavirus pandemic began. These numbers are believed to fall short of the actual toll because of low levels of testing.
Unicef and the WHO said the shipment of the vaccines represented “part of the first wave of Covid vaccines headed to several low and middle-income countries”.
Though the vaccines are not generally intended for children, Unicef is involved in the scheme because of its expertise in procurement and the logistics of vaccine delivery.
So far, richer countries have been able to buy far more Covid-19 vaccines than poorer ones.
The Covax scheme was set up by the World Health Organization the Gavi vaccines alliance and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) to try to prevent poorer countries from being pushed to the back of the queue.