Botswana has secured access to half a million doses of the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine. The Government of the Republic of Botswana has signed a Memorandum of Agreement with Moderna to procure the doses, aided by funding from De Beers Group, Debswana and DTC Botswana (DTCB) following the financial pledge made by the three companies in June 2021 to support the Covid-19 vaccine rollout in Botswana.
De Beers Group, Debswana and DTCB’s financial contribution has funded 40 per cent of the cost of the vaccines. Due to the ongoing tightness in global supply for vaccines, the doses will be delivered in phases in accordance with the terms of the agreement between the Government of Botswana and Moderna Switzerland GmbH.Dr Edwin Dikoloti, Minister of Health and Wellness said: “There continues to be an extremely high level of global demand for Covid-19 vaccines, so securing access to this large tranche of doses is a very important step in our ongoing fight against the pandemic.
This will enable us to continue to accelerate our national vaccination programme and we will continue to work tirelessly to secure further vaccine doses at the earliest possible opportunity. We thank our partners in De Beers Group, Debswana and DTCB for their ongoing support.”Bruce Cleaver, CEO, De Beers Group, said, “The Covid-19 Delta variant has increased the challenges being experienced around the globe and we are committed to standing shoulder to shoulder with our partners in Botswana both to address urgent needs, and step-up to support the nation’s longer-term recovery. De Beers’ belief in Botswana, its people and their future, remain unshakable. We are pleased to have been able to play a role in supporting Government with its vaccine procurement and rollout plan during this challenging period due to low global availability of doses at a time of great need.
Partnership has always been at the heart of De Beers relationship with the people of Botswana, and it is more important now than ever before.”Alongside funding vaccine procurement, the financial pledge made by De Beers Group, Debswana and DTCB in support of Botswana’s vaccine rollout has also been used for in-kind support. This includes the establishment of the Jwaneng Mine Hospital Vaccination centre and the Debswana Corporate Centre (DCC) vaccination point in Gaborone.The designated areas have been set up in line with the established requirements for vaccination centres and with guidance from the District Health Management Team (DHMT).
De Beers Group, Debswana and DTCB are committed to the fair and equitable distribution of vaccines and support the priority approach as defined by the National Deployment and Vaccination Plan (NDVP) for Covid-19.The financial pledge in support of the vaccine rollout programme builds on the support already provided to date in helping Botswana respond to the Covid-19 pandemic, meaning that De Beers Group, Debswana and DTCB collectively have now provided more than 100 million Pula of Covid-19 relief support to Botswana since the start of the pandemic. Alongside the 55 million Pula pledge made in June 2021, De Beers Group, Debswana and DTCB made a combined 46.5 million Pula financial and in-kind donation to the Government of Botswana in 2020. This formed the three entities’ early contribution to the country’s Covid-19 emergency response and funded a range of vital equipment, including Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) machines, test kits, sanitisers, training of health care workers, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), isolation centres and the setup of testing centres in Orapa and Jwaneng and at the Debswana Corporate Centre.