Kenya is among countries in Eastern Africa that are expected to receive some 39 million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine from the African Union (AU).
The AU has secured a deal to procure 270 million doses for all member states, with Kenya expected to receive 11 million vaccine doses.
These will be an addition to the 24 million doses the Kenyan government has ordered from Gavi. The State plans to purchase 12 million from other source, bringing the total of expected doses for the country to 47 million.
AU chairman, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, Wednesday announced that from the provisional 270 million doses, at least 50 million will be available between April and June 2021.
Pfizer, AstraZeneca (through an independent licensee, Serum Institute of India) and Johnson & Johnson will supply the doses. Pfizer will supply 50 million doses, Johnson & Johnson 120 million while AstraZeneca will be giving 100 million jabs.
Deliveries are expected by end of March.
Meanwhile, Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary for Health Mutahi Kagwe says the first batch of vaccines is in transit and Kenyans might get the jabs as soon as this month.
“We are engaging institutions like GAVI, who gave us the date of February. But it is quite possible that with the private sector, we can get the vaccines earlier than the date GAVI has given us,” Kagwe said.
He said Kenya is considering several vaccine candidates besides AstraZeneca.
“We are not just looking at one vaccine. We are engaging on the Africa platform, with CDC Africa and having discussions on Moderna and even China’s Sinopharm,” Kagwe said.
At the same time, the Health CS said the low number of cases recorded in the country recently is not an indication of flattening of the curve.
“We are yet to declare that the curve is flattened, we still have to assess the impact of the festivities and reopening of schools. Kenyans must maintain the containment measures,” he said.