STOP ILLEGAL VACCINE IMPORTS
BY Prisca Lumingu
The Ministry of Health has warned against any unauthorized importation of vaccines into the country as this contravenes the medicines and allied substance Act no 3 of 2013.
And the Ministry has reaffirmed its commitment to ensuring transparency and accountability in the acquisition, receipt and distribution of quality, safe and effective covid19 vaccines.
This follows the inception and destruction of 10,000 doses of unauthorised Covid-19 vaccines named Hayat-Vax valued at $150,000 which were imported on 2nd July 2021 by Chrismar Earthmoving Equipment and seized by ZAMRA.
THE characterisation as fake and subsequent destruction of 10, 000 doses of the Hayat Vax SARS-COV-2 Vaccine has shocked Chrismar Earth moving proprietor Valden Findlay who imported the consignment.
The Zambia Regulatory Authority (ZAMRA) intercepted the consignment at the Kenneth Kaunda International Airport (KKIA) after it was alleged that they were fake.
Mr Findlay explained that the doses were a donation from the people of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) who had certified them as okay for use by people in various countries.
Mr Findlay in an interview said that he was being targeted and that people wanted to discredit his name that he wanted to sell the consignment when in fact not.
He said that the vaccines were not fake and that they were actually approved in the UAE where they are produced together with countries like Vietnam and the Philippines.
But ministry of Health permanent secretary Kennedy Malama said at a briefing that the said vaccines were not ordered by the ministry of health.
Dr Malama said at no time did the ministry of health undertake any tendering process for procurement of vaccines at which Chrismar Earthmoving Equipment was selected.
He said following cabinet approval of the commencement of the covid19 vaccination programme for Zambia on 24th March 2021, the ministry had only received vaccines through the COVAX facility and through donations from bilateral partners.