Another batch of 500 000 Sinopharm vaccines ordered from China is expected in the country next month to boost the national COVID-19 vaccination programme, a cabinet minister has said.
This follows reports of a shortage of the jabs, with several people who turned up at inoculation centres over the past several days being turned away in some parts of the country.
Speaking at the 16th post-Cabinet briefing in Harare on Wednesday, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa said the vaccines would arrive in the country next month. She said:
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Regarding vaccine procurement, the public is informed that delivery of the 500 000 Sinopharm vaccine doses which were ordered from China is expected in June 2021.
The government says it has set aside US$10 million to purchase COVID-19 vaccines in response to the deadly pandemic and so far, 1.2 million Sinovac vaccines have already been procured from China.
The national vaccination programme was launched in February with a target to reach 10 million people with the vaccines to reach herd immunity.
As of 26 May, a total of 643 531 people had received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine while 293 509 their second dose across the country.