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GOVERNMENT should make it mandatory for anyone accessing public places to have been vaccinated against Covid-19, says former Health Minister Jonas Chanda.  

Dr Chanda said the move would encourage more people to be vaccinated.

Dr Chanda said while no one should be forced to get vaccinated, the government must put measures in place that ensures that no person poses a health risk to another. 

He was however, quick to mention that no one should be forced or arrested for not taking the vaccine as this would go against the freedoms of the citizens.   

“When it comes to enforcement, no one should be forced or arrested for not having taken the vaccine,” he said. 

Dr Chanda said the Covid-19 is not only a health issue but a social-economic matter because when the country closes down due to an outbreak, productivity is negatively affected.

“For instance, in USA, the federal government doesn’t want productivity to suffer or government to shut down so they have put in some certain rules that all workers in the civil service have to have been vaccinated for them to access their workplaces,” he said.   

Dr Chanda said the decision will help the country to achieve herd immunity for its population and also enable achieve public health security which is cardinal for social and economic development of the country.  

He reminded Zambians that the Covid-19 pandemic has had negative effects on the country and resulted in the death of over 3, 700 people. 

“But again those refusing to vaccinate should remember that they are putting the lives of others at great risk but also they should know that where their freedom end that is where the freedom of others start,” he said.

Dr Chanda said even the airlines did the same by putting a condition that someone can only board their planes when they are fully vaccinated.

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