While the Burundians wait for the delivery of the first batch of Covid-19 vaccines, the government publicly stated last week on Wednesday that citizens will bear personal risks for voluntary vaccination.
Health Minister Thaddee Ndikumana said the country had received a letter from the World Bank announcing that the vaccines would be made available in the country, but the government distanced itself from the conditions attached to the shipment of the Vaccine has yet to be received.
He said the government will not sign any terms and conditions if side effects from the vaccine occur and that “the government will”. do not compensate because we know there are vaccines that some Burundians have taken, but we are not responsible or pay citizens money or compensation in the event of damage. “
mr Ndikumana said that Burundians who want to get vaccinated have the option to take the jab as some work for international organizations while others travel frequently.
The government hasn’t clarified whether they have a public vaccination campaign in the country but indicated that organizations willing to import vaccines, including the World Bank initiative, could do so.
” We want to tell citizens that the government’s plan is to test and treat patients. The government did not refuse to bring the vaccines so anyone or any organization that wants to introduce vaccines can do so, and if any citizen wants to be vaccinated, they can, ”said Mr Ndikumana.
This government policy comes at a time when the country recorded 557 Covid cases in just four days this month, raising concerns about the spread of infection.
The country has lifted the mandatory quarantine for arriving passengers, be they tourists or returning Burundians living abroad. But an online pre-registration portal is open to all travelers to book a test on arrival.
“We have seen cases decrease in some areas of the country and increase significantly in other areas , as in Kirundo, Ngozi and Bujumbura, so that the national committee to combat Covid-19 has made the decision to initiate mass tests in the affected provinces, “said Burundi’s Minister of Health.