Ivory Coast launches Covax vaccination drive

The first shots of coronavirus vaccines from the COVAX programme were given to people in the Ivory Coast. Jabs were being given to health workers, teachers and members of the armed forces at the Treichville Sports Palace in the commercial capital, Abidjan, where 95% of the country's cases have been recorded, according to the health ministry.

Ivory Coast launches Covax vaccination drive

The COVAX initiative, formed to ensure fair access to vaccines by low- and middle-income countries, has been hampered by the severely limited global supply of doses and logistical problems.

The drive is using 504,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine which is made by the Serum Institute of India.

According to the World Health Organization's Africa office, some 24 other African countries are expected to start receiving vaccines via COVAX, in what is the largest vaccine procurement and supply operation in history, according to the World Health Organization and UNICEF.

Ivory Coast's Health Minister Eugene Aka Aouele said the first phase of the campaign will target more than 250,000 people. He also said the nation aims to vaccinate more than 20% of the population, or 5.6 million people.