Rwanda reaches WHO’s COVID-19 vaccination target
Rwanda has reached the World Health Organization (WHO) target of vaccinating 40 percent of the entire population by December 2021.
According to a statement by the Rwandan Ministry of Health, as of Dec. 24, a total of 7,556,466 of the targeted Rwandan population aged over 12, have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, while 5,313,421 have received two doses.
"Vaccinating 40 percent of our country's total population before the end of 2021 is a great milestone. This is attributed to our country's leadership, partnership, coordination and community engagement," Daniel Ngamije, Rwandan Health Minister told Xinhua in a telephone interview.
He added that the country has already achieved its COVID-19 vaccination target of covering 30 percent of the total population with two doses by end of 2021.
According to him, the target is to vaccinate 70 percent of the total population by December 2022.
Rwanda's total population is over 12.6 million, according to the National Institute of Statistics of Rwanda (NISR).
Vaccination rate also exceeded the 30 percent target Rwanda had set to achieve by the end of this year, according to the ministry.
Last week, the government of Rwanda imposed restrictions for unvaccinated people in the country, excluding them from indoor restaurants, worship places, public transport in order to minimize the spread of coronavirus and encourage vaccine skeptics to get their jabs.
Meanwhile, according to WHO, just 3% of the almost 8 billion doses given globally have been administered in Africa, and only around 8% of Africans are fully vaccinated, compared with more than 60% in many high-income countries. Vaccine apartheid and nationalism perpetrated by rich Western countries has been blamed for the low rate of vaccination in many African countries.