Burundi allows Covid jabs but won’t encourage them

Burundi has agreed to receive Covid jabs, but the government says it will not urge people to get vaccinated, the health minister has said.

Dr Thaddée Ndikumana told reporters that the vaccines were proposed by the World Bank and they took decision “to welcome them”.

He said the government will not mobilise people to be vaccinated, that only those who need it could go seek the jab.

Burundian authorities have been sceptical about the vaccines – and previously said they would monitor how effective they are elsewhere before agreeing to let them in.

The minister on Thursday evening confirmed reports of Covid cases rise in the northern provinces, bordering Rwanda and in the economic capital Bujumbura.

For that reason, he said, they would open treatment centres in those affected regions.

Burundi has so far reported nearly 6,000 Covid cases and and eight deaths since the pandemic began in country in March 2020 – records that some have questioned.

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