Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi reaffirmed on Monday the African demand to get fair and equitable vaccines to meet the needs of the peoples of the continent.
“Despite our regional and international efforts to confront the pandemic, the current stage has brought new challenges, most importantly the availability of the necessary vaccine for our peoples,” Sisi said.
Speaking during the second edition of the Aswan Forum for Sustainable Peace and Development, Sisi said the coronavirus pandemic demonstrated the overlapping and intertwining of risks and challenges facing the African societies and countries and the need to search for the best means and mechanisms that support the post-pandemic joint efforts to help the continent handle the crisis and get out of it safe and sound.
“We proved during the past year that all the challenges imposed by the pandemic and its repercussions would not prevent us from implementing the African agenda, and in fact, we are more determined to move forward in pursuing our plans to achieve the goals of the African Union's Agenda 2063,” the Egyptian President noted.
He affirmed that international solidarity is an urgent matter to face the coronavirus pandemic crisis peacefully and safely.
Sisi said that aside from the heavy burdens the African countries have on their shoulders due to the coronavirus pandemic, the continent is still suffering from the dangers of armed conflicts and civil wars, which threaten sustainable security.
For his part, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres commended the African Union’s efforts through the COVID-19 African Vaccine Acquisition Task Force to secure vaccine doses for African countries.
“Last week, the COVAX facility delivered its first shipments of vaccines to Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire. This is a historic step towards ensuring equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines globally. Vaccines must be a global public good, available and affordable for everyone, everywhere,” he said.
Also during the forum, Rwanda President Paul Kagame spoke of ways to survive the pandemic.
Concerning the economic recovery, he said, "we need to create a robust supply chain to boost the manufacturing sector.”