Africa’s COVID-19 Vaccination Campaign Makes Slow Progress, Reaching Only 16.3%
Africa CDC director John Nkengasong

Only 10 of Africa’s 54 countries have vaccinated more than a third of their citizens, although the continent has administered over two-thirds of the vaccine doses it has procured.

The top 10 vaccinators are Seychelles (81%), Mauritius (76%), Rwanda (64%), Morocco (63%),  Cape Verde (55%), Botswana (54%), Tunisia (53%), Mozambique (43%), São Tomé and Príncipe (40%) and Lesotho 36%. Five of these are countries with very small populations.

In total, only 16.3% of Africa’s population has now been fully vaccinated, according to Africa Centres for Disease Control director Dr John Nkengasong.

However, he told a Thursday media briefing that, of 770 million vaccine doses procured, 517 million had been administered, representing 67% of the total available stock.

Vaccine consumption in the 14 most populous AU member states ranged from 21% in Madagascar to 94% in South Africa and 93% in Ethiopia. Egypt and Morocco have used up 90% of their vaccines but Nigeria and Ghana had only administered about half their doses. 

Fifth wave

While nine African countries are experiencing a fifth COVID-19 wave, Africa reported a 21% decrease in new cases  – although at the same time, it also performed 23% fewer tests.

Nkengasong urged all countries to continue testing, adding that the test positivity rate was “a high 11%”.

Algeria, Benin, Congo Republic, Egypt, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Mauritius, Somalia and Tunisia are in the midst of their fifth wave.

The five countries reporting the highest increases in cases are (in order of increases): South Africa, Egypt, Tunisia, Seychelles and Zambia.

On Wednesday, South Africa reported its highest cases in three months – 2,846 new cases with a 13,4% positivity rate, according to the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD).


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