President Nana Akufo- Addo , says BioNTech, the German biotechnology company, will contribute to the construction of a modular production facility for vaccines such as those for malaria and tuberculosis in Ghana.
Speaking at the 73rd edition of the Annual New Year School and Conference, held at the University of Ghana, Legon, President Akufo-Addo stated that Ghana is also on her way to establishing domestic manufacturing plants for fill, finish and packaging of COVID-19 vaccines.
According to the President, “I will, on 16th February, together with His Excellency M. Macky Sall, President of the Republic of Senegal, and His Excellency Mr. Paul Kagame, President of the Republic of Rwanda, inspect in Marburg, Germany, the production facilities that we need to employ to this end. We are going to build a pan-African project with these two (2) sister African nations, where, initially, the fill and finish plant will be located in Ghana.”
He continued, “BioNTech of Germany, the now renowned health technology company, which works with Pfizer, has agreed to be our partner, and will contribute also to the construction of a modular production facility for other vaccines as well, such as those for malaria and tuberculosis in Ghana.”
Delivering a speech on the theme, “COVID-19 and Socio-Economic Dynamics in Ghana”, the President stated that the pandemic has illustrated vividly the need for self-reliance in all areas of social and economic life.
“That is why Government encouraged and facilitated the domestic manufacture of personal protective equipment at the height of their global shortages, which has enabled Ghanaian companies, today, to be exporting such products within the ECOWAS Region. It is key that we also break the cycle of dependence on foreigners in the fields of science and medicine, as well,” he said.
President Akufo-Addo reiterated that Ghana should never be in the situation “of beggars that we were at the height of the pandemic, when we could not access vaccines, which were being hoarded by the rich, developed nations of the world. Charity, they quite rightly say, begins at home.”
He urged all Ghanaians to get vaccinated, and help end the spread of the virus in the country, as the science indicates that getting vaccinated “is the most efficient way to defeat the virus and go back to our normal way of life, re-open fully our economy, and return our nation onto the path of progress and prosperity.”
The President indicated that Government has succeeded in securing considerable quantities of vaccines for the country, numbering nearly 26 million doses so far, with more on the way.
“Thus far, a total of ten million, four hundred and fifty-one thousand, six hundred and sixty-two (10,451,662) vaccine doses have been administered. Seven million and seventy thousand, seven hundred and nineteen (7,070,719) persons have received at least one jab, with three million, three hundred and eighty thousand, nine hundred and forty-nine (3,380,943) persons fully vaccinated. So, I entreat all those who have not been vaccinated to do so. Our responsibility to one another requires that we be vaccinated,” he added.