Sat. Feb 27th, 2021

NAIROBI (Reuters) – A senior Health Ministry official said on Thursday that Kenya was moving forward on a plan to vaccinate its citizens against COVID-19, which is using a vaccine developed by AstraZeneca.

South Africa halted the rollout of the vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford, following a small clinical trial that showed the 501Y.V2 variant in the country offered minimal protection against major to mild to moderate disease.

The move will not deter Kenya, which it says is expected to receive 24 million doses of the vaccine earlier this month, said Mercy Mowangi, chief administrative secretary at the ministry.

“We’re going to continue with AstraZeneca because we’re doing our own indexing and we’re comfortable going ahead with it,” she told Reuters.

The World Heath Organization also issued an advisory on Wednesday asking countries to continue using the vaccine, Mewangangi said, which supports the position of the Kenyan government.

(Reporting by Duncan Miriri, editing by William McLean)

Copyright 2021 Thomson Reuters.

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