DA MP Phumzile Van Damme and ANC stalwart Derek Hanekom have not only endorsed the Covid-19 vaccine, which is expected to arrive in SA soon, but have also said they are willing to wait until all vulnerable groups have received their jabs before they are vaccinated.
In his address to the nation on Monday, President Cyril Ramaphosa said SA has a comprehensive vaccination strategy in place which is aimed at reaching all parts of the country. Ramaphosa said the vaccine will be rolled out in three phases and will ensure SA reaches population or herd immunity.
After the president’s address, Hanekom tweeted: “I will definitely get myself vaccinated when the vaccine becomes available. But I am definitely prepared to wait until more vulnerable categories of people are vaccinated.”
On Tuesday, Van Damme responded to Hanekom by saying she too will prioritise those who need the vaccine the most.
“Agreed. I intend to do the same. None of that of politicians first in line with photo ops. The vulnerable first, we can wait.”
Ramaphosa said government is in the procurement phase and in talks with vaccine manufactures. He said SA has so far secured 20 million doses.
“While there are several promising negotiations with different manufacturers that need to be concluded, we have to date secured 20 million doses, to be delivered mainly in the course of the year, and a substantial amount of it in the first half of the year,” he said.
Health workers and essential workers will be among the first groups to receive the vaccine.