Nairobi, 28 February, 2021 / 12:40 pm (ACI Africa).
As the 46th Regular session of the UN Human Rights Council gets underway, the leadership of the global confederation of Catholic relief agencies, Caritas Internationalis (CI) is calling on the international community to promote the local production of COVID-19 vaccine in poor countries, including those in Africa.
“Caritas Internationalis urges the international community to promote the local production of vaccines in Africa, Latin America and Asia within the next six months,” CI’s Secretary General, Aloysius John has said in his Thursday, February 25 message addressed to the leadership of the Council.
In promoting local production of vaccines among poor countries, the Secretary General also urges the leadership of the UN Human Rights Council to ensure that “Technical collaboration with the poorest nations and the issues related to patents as a common good” are “addressed urgently.”
“It is our firm conviction that access to vaccines against the pandemic is a basic right but in many of these countries it will not be automatic,” the head of the over 160-member confederation notes in his February 25 message addressed to the Council’s President, Nazhat Shameem.
To ensure fair and equitable distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine, the 64-year-old CI official recommends that accompanying measures “be taken to build awareness, getting the vaccine to the remotest areas all ensuring optimal storage mechanisms.”