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MTN supports AU’s COVID-19 vaccination efforts 

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Ralph Mupita, chief financial officer of MTN Group Ltd. Photographer: Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg


The MTN Group has supported the African Union (AU)’s vaccination programme with $25m. This is expected to secure up to seven million doses of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccines for health workers across the continent.

President and Chief Executive Officer, MTN Group, Ralph Mupita, said the donation is part of the firm’s resolve to support governments’ efforts in flattening the curve of the pandemic for a healthy Africa.
 
Already, Chairperson of the AU, President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa revealed that the Union, through African Export-Import Bank, had secured a provisional 270 million doses on behalf of its member states with an advance procurement commitment of $2 billion to the manufacturers.
 
According to him, public and private partnerships are needed if Africans are to succeed in the fight against the pandemic and restore social and economic norms for the continent and communities.

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Director, the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, Dr. John Nkengasong, while speaking on the vaccination programme, said to achieve at least 60 per cent immunity in the continent, Africans need equitable access to the COVID-19 vaccine.
  
“Our goal is to ensure that all those who need the COVID-19 vaccine have access to it very quickly but the biggest hurdle in Africa has been vaccine financing and the logistics of vaccinating at scale. We, therefore, welcome the right partnerships, like the one with MTN to achieve our minimum 60 per cent vaccination target,” he said.
 
 Since the beginning of the pandemic, the tech giant disclosed significant contributions it had made to help limit the spread of the virus and protect lives and livelihoods in the continent.
  
Among other initiatives, the group said it has contributed towards government relief funds, the procurement and sourcing of vital health care resources, food and water security through the provision of food packages and water points to meet basic needs and the economic enablement of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) and local market value chains. At the onset of this pandemic, MTN Nigeria donated personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and testing kits.

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