The government started the Covid-19 vaccination on Tuesday, February 23, with priority being given to the Afghan health workers, security forces, and journalists.
The first Covid-19 vaccine was injected in a ceremony held at the Presidential Palace in the presence of President Ghani, his two vice presidents, some cabinet members, India’s Ambassador, MPs, and senators.
Describing the vaccine rollout as an opportunity, President Ghani said that the government is working to supply resources for providing the required vaccines for around 40 percent of Afghanistan’s population. Pointing to the spread of new types of coronaviruses, he noted that the danger of the pandemic is still in its place and called on the people to observe precaution measures against the virus infection.
Wahid Majroh, the acting minister of public health, thanked the government of India for its generous Covid-19 vaccine donation. He called on the people to cooperate in the implementation of the Covid-19 vaccine.
India’s Ambassador to Afghanistan, Rudrendra Tandon said India’s donation of the Covid-19 vaccine to Afghanistan is part of his country’s effort to fight against the Covid-19 globally. India is the biggest Covid-19 vaccine provider in the world and has so far supplied two million doses of vaccine to its friend nations and partner countries.
As a role model of global solidarity in the fight against Covid-19, India is ready to closely work with the Afghan government and its health institutions, the Indian Ambassador said.
As per the account of the Ministry of Public Health, a total of 653 million US dollars is needed to supply the required vaccine doses for all the citizens across the country.
According to Majroh, the Afghan government has so far allocated 115 million USD to provide vaccination for 20 percent of the population, it has considered 218 million USD to provide vaccines for another 20 percent of the population, and is trying to raise a total of 320 million USD for vaccinating the remaining 60 percent of the population.
Afghanistan recorded the first case of coronavirus on February 24, 2020, in Herat.
According to the latest figures of the Ministry of Public Health, a total of 55,600 people have so far tested positive for the virus. Nearly 49,000 covid-19 patients have recovered from the disease and more than 2,400 have died from it.