African governments have been urged not to lose faith in the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, after several European countries suspended use of the jab.
Two people have already died from sinus vein thrombosis, and others had to be treated in hospital after they received vaccinations with the Oxford vaccine.
13 European nations that paused the use of the vaccine expressed concern over blood clots in those who received the jabs.
The countries are seeking further clarification on the safety of the vaccine but the UK health secretary says the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid vaccine is safe.
According to AstraZeneca about 17 million people across the EU and the UK have received a dose of the vaccine, with fewer than 40 cases of blood clots reported.
In Africa millions have already been vaccinated with many countries on the continent receiving the doses for free under the Covax initiative.
African nations rely on the AstraZeneca jab since it is cheaper and easier to store than other vaccines.
A senior World Health Organization (WHO) official has urged governments in Africa not to lose faith in the jab.
Dr Richard Mihigo – the WHO’s head of immunisation in Africa – said the product had so far proved to be safe.
2⃣2⃣ African countries received 1⃣4⃣ #COVID19 million doses in 2 weeks, with many more to come.#COVAX can only reach 20% of the African population by 2021. More needs to be done for #VaccinEquity because no one is safe until everyone is safe. pic.twitter.com/m3f9zEqOPW
— WHO African Region (@WHOAFRO) March 13, 2021
African countries are still battling conspiracy theories about vaccines with many skeptical about the safety of the Covid-19 vaccine.
African leaders and other prominent personalities in society are taking the jabs hoping to encourage others to do so.
But Africa really has no option but to keep faith with the Oxford vaccine because that is all it got at the moment.
With no major cases of side-effects in those who have received it so far, the continent has no option but to hold on to it to help reduce the spread of the virus.