Foreigners Flock Into Zimbabwe To Get Covid-19 Vaccine
Zimbabwe has been receiving plaudits, some of them given begrudgingly, for its well run national Covid-19 vaccination programme. And now foreigners, particularly South Africans, are flocking into the country to get their Covid-19 vaccine shots.
Zimbabwe’s national Covid-19 vaccination programme was launched on February 18, by Vice President Constantino Chiwenga. Under the programme, any Zimbabwean who is 18 years and older can get the Covid-19 vaccine for free and with no hassles at their local clinics.
President Emmerson Mnangagwa also announced that foreigners can get their vaccine shots in Zimbabwe at a cost, after noting that other countries’ vaccination programmes are still facing challenges.
“Zimbabweans will get the vaccine for free, but for foreigners who come here, they will receive the vaccine at a cost. This is a human element, we cannot deny anybody the vaccine, but if you are not Zimbabwean we will give you the vaccine at a cost,” Mnangagwa said.
Zimbabwe has so far authorised the use of four Covid-19 vaccines: China’s Sinopharm and Sinovac vaccines, Russia’s Sputnik V and Covaxin from India.
It seems that foreigners took notice of President Mnangagwa’s words and are now flocking into IZmbabwe to get their Covid-19 shots. Most of the vaccine tourists seem to be coming from South Africa, where they say they are still not eligible to get the vaccine.
Foreigners have to pay US$70 (approximately R984) to get both shots of the Covid-19 vaccine, something which most of them regard as reasonable.
Grant Evans, a Zimbabwean businessman who brought his extended family from South Africa for the Covid-19 vaccine shots told Agencies,
“The Covid-19 vaccine rollout is slow in SA, and my extended family in Cape Town needed to get vaccinated. We made a decision to bring them to Zimbabwe to get vaccinated. The private clinics in Zimbabwe are charging foreign nationals $70 for both jabs, we are happy to pay and it sounds reasonable,”
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